On this posting I am going to mention a few things about choosing a run during the winter season.

1) Length of run.

  • Try to choose shorter runs in colder temperatures to keep warm.
  • If you can leave an extra shuttle car in the middle of the run for an additional take out in case someone is to cold to continue.

Remember that one of the first sings of hypothermia is loss of brain function.

2) Difficulty of run.

  • Select a run well within your and the groups ability. With the extra challenge of the temperatures and possible water level fluctuation. I recommend that this is not the time to push your limits.
  • If you haven’t done a lot of winter paddling or get cold easily choose a run below your current ability to see how you and your group deal with the cold. Then you can reassess the run as you get used to the temperatures.

3) Know your group

  • As always learn your groups paddling ability
  • Know if they have paddled during similar conditions,
  • Be sure they are aware of the conditions and how it will affect them.
  • Make sure they can handle the cold.
  • I usually try to get a larger experienced to less experienced ratio of paddlers this time of year. ( also keep in mind experienced with winter paddling

Remind everyone that it is cold out there and if they are not prepared for it they should be asked to not paddle.