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The Boathouse Blog

Kids on the River

We got the scoop on why kids love rafting!

Being a kid and being on the river go together like peanut butter and jelly. Kids are made for the river, or quite possibly, rivers are made for kids. The wide open beaches, splashy rapids, and big swimming pools provide a natural playground that no kid can resist (or adult for that matter). But don’t take it from us! We wanted to know, first hand, how awesome it is to be a kid on the river. So, we went to our resident expert river kids: Linden and Britt Arentsen. With over 10 years of combined river experience, they are the region’s most trusted source on rafting vacations for kids. Luckily, they agreed to sit down with us and answer some questions about what is it like to be a kid on the river:

How old are you?

Linden: Eleven
Britt: Seven and three-quarters 

How old were you when you first started taking multi-day river trips?

Linden: Three
Britt: Four

Disclaimer: These expert river kids started going on rafting trips earlier than we recommend. The youngest that we allow on our river trips is 5 years old for the Salmon and 7 years old for the Snake.

When I say “the river” what words or pictures immediately come to mind?

Linden: Fun! whitewater! 
Britt: Fun! splashy!

How do river trips make you feel?

Linden: Disconnected from everything else, in a good way! 
Britt: Excited!

Can you tell me about a time that you felt proud of yourself on a river trip?

Linden: When I paddle boarded most of the Salmon River. I fell off a lot. The first couple of times I was scared when I fell off but then I got used to it and realized I could just float and it was just water! Also when I learned how to put up a cot and a tent. 
Britt: When I rowed the boat. It’s fun! I like feeling the of the push of the water. I also like to row because I can splash people with the oars. 

Editor Comment: Usually when you arrive at camp your tent will be set up for you. However, we encourage guests to set up their own cot. If you need some pointers on how to set up a cot, check out our instructional video. We are also happy to teach you on the river!

What is your favorite game to play on a rafting trip?

Linden: Bocce ball, sardines, swimming through rapids. It’s fun to go up and down in the waves!
Britt: Kubb, jumping off the boat!

Editor Comment: On every trip we provide a game bag full of group games like bocce ball, Kubb, spikeball, and volleyball to keep the fun going all evening!**

Do you ever get bored on rafting trips?

Linden: No, not really. There’s always stuff to look at and do.
Britt: I don’t usually get bored when I am out there. If I do then I usually get a snack or go in the water.

Do you like the food on river trips?

Linden: Yes! I love the food. It’s one of my favorite parts. 
Britt: Yes!

What is your favorite food on the river?

Linden: Santa Fe cakes. Pineapple upside down cake. 
Britt: Bacon.

Editor Comment: We have a naturally kid-friendly menu. But in case you have a picky eater we always bring back up PB&J and boxed mac’n’cheese.

What is your least favorite part of river trips?

Linden: Bee stings. — is it ok to include this?
Britt: Leaving the river. It just makes me want to get in a jet boat and go back up and do it all over again. 

What is the coolest wildlife you have seen on a rafting trip?

Linden: Otters!
Britt: Bears!
Linden: I don’t like to get close to the snakes but I think it’s really cool when I see them. 

What is your favorite memory from the river?

Linden: The first time I jumped off the tall jumping rock on the salmon river. It made me feel proud of myself!
Britt: The first time I did a front flip into the water!


What is your favorite video game right now? 

Linden: Minecraft
Britt: Roadblocks

If you could choose between playing that video game for a week or going on a river trip for a week, which would you choose?

Linden: River trip 100%!!!!
Britt: River trip! River trip! River trip!

What advice would you give other kids who are taking their first river trip?

Linden: Don’t leave the groover box at the groover. If you drop your food on the ground make sure to pick it up because it attracts bees. Don’t just bury it in the sand. 
Britt: If you want to go on a river trip you’re not immediately there. It takes awhile to get there and it takes awhile to get the boats ready. Bring your life vest and always stay seated when entering a rapid.
Linden: Drink lots of water
Britt: But don’t drink the river water
Linden: Yeah, don’t drink the river water</span
Britt: But you should pee in it. 

Editor Comment: We provide all the gear you need for a river vacation, including kid and adult size life vests. “The Groover” is the name for our beloved river toilet. The “Groover Box” is what we use as the key to the bathroom. For more information about using the loo on the river, check out this post

There you have it! A glowing review from river rafting’s top critics. Want to join in on the fun? Bring out your inner kid and come down the river with us!  Check out the variety of trips we have to offer: Guided Whitewater Rafting Trips

Have any questions? Feel free to reach out to us directly!