Basic Whitewater Packrafting Equivalency - Seattle - 2023

Packrafting Course

Basic Whitewater Packrafting Equivalency

Basic Whitewater equivalency is a one outing during which you will demonstrate all the skills taught in our Basic Whitewater Packrafting Course.

The equivalency test is conducted as a one day outing on a regional class II whitewater river.  During the course we will confirm that you have suitable equipment and skills for paddling whitewater rivers.  

The equivalency cuttings will be scheduled periodically as people register for this class.

Swimming and Rescue

  • Jump into and swim in moving water
  • Swim cross current at a ferry angle
  • Transition to and maintain a safety position
  • Swim into an eddy
  • Trow a line to a swimmer in current and guide them to the shore
  • Backup someone who threw a line.

Individual Rescue Skills

  • Capsize and wet exit
  • Self-reentry from deep water in 90 seconds
  • Reenter a stabilized boat 
  • Stabilize a swimmer's boat while they re-enter

Group Rescue

  • Capsize, wet exit, and push away from paddle and boat to become the swimmer
  • Paddle to collect the swimmer. Tow the swimmer some distance
  • Right a capsized boat and bump to swimmer
  • Collect the paddle and bring to the swimmer (paddle with two paddles)

River Reading

  • Identify strainers and discuss their concerns
  • Identify lower and higher risk hydraulics.  Discuss what makes higher risk
  • Identify routes through a rapid

Packrafting Skills

  • Launch from rocky shoreline into Class II current
  • Paddle through a boulder garden.
  • Paddle through a hole
  • Break through a well-defined eddy line near shore and at a mid-stream boulder.
  • Paddle through a wave train.
  • Demonstrate the ability to manage boat speed and spacing through choosing slower water, catching eddies, or backpaddling.
Course Requirements

This course has no scheduled activities.

Required Equipment

Each participant must bring:

  • Packraft with grab lines on bow and stern 
  • PFD Class III or better 
  • Helmet 
  • Immersion wear appropriate for the environment.
  • Spare clothing 
  • Boat repair kit 
  • Whistle 
Course Materials

You must register for this course to see course materials.