Tuesday, August 4th, 2015

What do I wear rafting?

Okay, you’ve made the decision to go on a raft trip with Glacier Raft Company. You know that you need to check in 30 minutes before the trip departs and you know how to find our office.

One of the most common questions we hear is “What am I supposed to wear?” The answer, of course, depends on a number of variables including weather and water conditions.

In May and June, when the water is COLD, we provide wetsuits and booties for all rafters. Even if the air temperature is warm for the season, the cold water necessitates wetsuits. We have 3mm neoprene Farmer John wetsuits, sleeveless and with full legs. It is best to wear a swimsuit or synthetic underwear under the wetsuit. An optional layer is synthetic long underwear (quick-drying yet warm) which could also go under the wetsuit. A warm, fluffy fleece top over the wetsuit will give you added insulation. A wool hat or beanie will help to keep your head warm. Top it all off with a splash top provided by Glacier Raft Company to help keep those other layers warm and dry. Be sure to bring along some dry, warm clothes (including dry undies!) to change into after you get back from the trip!

Once the weather and water temperatures start to warm up (usually by July), we can forego the wetsuits in lieu of t-shirts (preferably synthetic) and swimming suits. You will still get splashed and wet, but the warm air will dry you quickly and the cold water splashes will actually be refreshing.

Glasses or sunglasses without some sort of retainer will surely end up at the bottom of the river; the best insurance against loss is to invest in Croakies or Chums.

A good pair of broken-in river shoes, water sandals with straps (like Chacos) or shoes you don’t mind getting wet are essential; flip flops won’t stay on your feet in swirling water. Neoprene booties are always available to rent.


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