Going On Your First River Rafting Trip? What You Should Bring With You

Going on your first river rafting trip can be fun. But many first-timers make mistakes that can make them uncomfortable during the trip or immediately thereafter. Here are a few things that you should bring along with you on your river rafting trip to help you stay safe and comfortable. 

Shoes That Will Stay on in Swift-Moving Water

If you are going rafting for the first time, you may instantly think that you want to throw on a pair of flip flops or Crocs. These shoes can get wet and typically dry fast. However, as you raft, your feet will be subjected to swift-moving water from rapids in the river at some points. This can knock your shoes off your feet and possibly into the river, leaving you without shoes for the rest of the trip. Instead, select old, lightweight tennis shoes or water shoes that will stay on your feet and that you don't mind getting wet or dirty. 

Appropriate Clothing

When you go rafting for the first time, the only clothing you may think you need is a bathing suit and a cover-up. However, this is not what you want to wear. If you are rafting in the colder months, you may want to wear a wet suit, splash jacket or layers of clothes made from synthetic materials. The water can be very cold, so you want to stay warm. If you are rafting in the summer months, you may want to wear shorts that dry quickly and a fitted t-shirt over your bathing suit. The raft can get hot sitting in the sun, and the shorts help to protect your legs and butt from sitting on hot plastic. The t-shirt helps to protect your shoulder and back from burning in the hot sun. Always wear light-weight, fitted clothing. This allows you to move and won't weigh you down should you fall in the water. Avoid jeans, sweats, over-sized shirts and shirts made from heavy material. 

Sun Protection

The last items that you will want to bring with you are items that help to protect you against the sun. When you are in or near the water, you can burn, even when it is cloudy or cool out. Always bring along and wear sunblock and a hat of some sort to protect your face. If you fail to do so, you can get sunburned and may feel uncomfortable later that evening. 

Many river rafting companies will provide you with a list of items that you can and should bring and a list of items you cannot or should not bring. Always pay attention to this list when determining what you will need to bring with you on your first river rafting trip.