Updates for Travel with ROW Adventures

 

We've just completed our 2020 rafting season and are happy to share that, with our strict COVID-19 protocols in place, we had a successful season, taking hundreds of people on various trips with no known cases of COVID-19 contracted while under our care. We are taking what we learned in 2020 and preparing for our 2021 tours.

No one knows what the world will be like in a few months’ time. Our hope is that we can operate our trips in much the same way we did before COVID-19. However, we have plans in place in the event that the virus is still a public health risk. We take standards for hygiene and cleanliness seriously and regardless of the status of the pandemic in 2021, we will continue to take additional steps to protect our guests and employees from virus spread. Our health and safety measures are designed to address a broad spectrum of viruses, including SARS-CoV-2 (a novel coronavirus that causes the disease COVID -19) and include everything from employee and guest use of PPE (Personal Protective Equipment), handwashing hygiene and cleaning product specifications to the cleaning of vehicles, boats and all the equipment used during our trips.

The decision about whether or not to travel in 2021 is a personal one. As you consider your options, it’s key that you feel comfortable with the uncertainties of the world today. We are doing what we can in terms of creating additional precautions and procedures, but the risk of exposure to, or contraction of, COVID-19 cannot be eliminated despite best efforts at mitigation. Participants of commercially outfitted trips must accept the inherent risk presented by the fact that it is not reasonable to expect the outfitter to effectively eliminate the virus from the environment.  

Time in the outdoors is always rejuvenating, and now, may be more important than ever. Being with others to share the joys of nature, connection and camaraderie in a healthy, supportive atmosphere has always been central to what we do. This coming season we plan to continue our operational procedures as detailed below. However, we cannot eliminate the risks associated with COVID-19 and only you can decide whether those risks are acceptable to you or not.

Generally we will strive to keep those traveling together in their own pod and refer to this as a “Travel Party.” 

hiking on the snake river in idaho

Arriving Healthy:

Your health has always been a priority on our trips, and so moving forward we’ll be implementing a guest pre-trip screening process based on new standard operating procedures developed among a number of companies within the outfitting world. This will include a temperature check and answering standard questions.  Please understand that if you or a member of your household cannot meet the screening criteria, travel with us will not be possible.

 

whitewater rafter

Covid Code of Conduct:  

Since our trips are all group activities, we’ve always expected people to act with courtesy and respect towards others.  This year we are adding a Covid Code of Conduct that spells out the expectations of physical distancing and other precautions that are essential for all participants to follow and agree to. 

girls on a rafting trip

Maintaining Distance:

Choosing outdoor adventure in wild places affords opportunities to spread out. ROW is committed to maintaining recommended distances during all aspects of our trips whenever possible. Our rafts will be rigged to allow for appropriate distance between our guides and your travel party.  Camping areas have plenty of space to spread out.  Our on-river dining areas will be more spacious than normal.

van

Transportation:

In order to best protect your health, we encourage you to drive your own vehicle to the put-in point and then have it shuttled to the actual take-out point, so it’s waiting at the end of the trip for you. This is possible on all our trips for an extra fee. On some of our 1-2 day trips we will ask guests to drive to the starting point and then we will shuttle drivers only at the end of the day back to their vehicles. When we do provide transportation in buses or vans, we will provide more space, as well as daily cleaning and disinfecting.

row guides

Small Groups, More Guides:

Our trips are already designed for small groups.  If COVID-19 remains a public health concern in 2021 we have contingencies in place for smaller trip sizes to allow us to staff extra guides.  This allows us to spread people out more among river craft.  (See Boat Capacity info in our full Operations and Mitigation Plan below.) If COVID-19 is not considered a public health concern, then we plan to revert to our regular trip size and staffing.

Prepared & Trained Guides with 24/7 Support:

Prepared & Trained Guides with 24/7 Support:

Although many of our trips operate in wilderness environments, we carry satellite phones for emergencies and have other communication strategies in place so that guides have additional resources as needed.  Our guides are trained in First Aid and CPR, and for this season are getting additional training regarding possible COVID-19 situations. This includes our long-standing protocols for evacuation should that be necessary. 

 

salmon and salad with broccoli

Meal Preparation & Outdoor Dining:  

Our guides will be trained to follow the recommended State and Federal guidelines for foodservice operations. For 2021 our guides will be wearing masks while handling food. Rather than serving food in our traditional buffet line method, we will be serving plated meals to all our guests.

 

cleaning

Additional Cleaning & Sanitation:  

Additional precautions have been implemented to further clean and disinfect all surfaces of the various equipment we use, including rafts, bicycles, paddles, helmets, PFDs (personal flotation devices), aircraft interiors, door handles, portable toilets, etc. Gloves, masks, and distancing according to current recommendations will be required of all staff.

hand sanitizer

Hand Washing & Sanitizing:  

At camp hand wash stations will be set up and all guides will have hand sanitizer as well.  We encourage you to bring your own hand sanitizer too.
 

Bring a Face Covering:

Bring a Face Covering:

Bring your preferred face covering, and we’ll supply a few extras on the trip in case you forget. Cloth masks, buffs, etc. are all good options. While we don’t anticipate needing to wear these frequently, there will be times when they are required such as at an indoor orientation meeting or when using group transport. We believe that traveling responsibly during this time means having recommended resources at your disposal should the need arise.

 

Traveling Solo:

Traveling Solo:

You will have your own tent on any of our camping trips at no extra charge. On our lodge-based Rogue River trips there is a single supplement charge. If traveling solo you must be willing to share raft space with others.

 

female rafting guide

Operations Plan

If you would like to see additional details please read our full Covid-19 Mitigation & Operations Plan.

When You Are Ready – We Are Here

We know that we are not alone in our struggles, and we so appreciate everyone that has reached out to us during this time. For 41 years ROW Adventures and our sister companies, Adventure Unbound, Sea Kayak Adventures and River Dance Lodge, have been sharing the joy of meaningful, life-enriching travel. As an adventure travel company, we’re accustomed to being flexible and navigating difficult waters. However, like most people, we have never experienced anything that has impacted so many people in so many ways, all around the globe.

As a family owned and operated company, we are doing our best to make sound decisions that are fair, compassionate and in the best interest of everyone. We thank you for navigating these difficult times with us. 

We look forward to sharing the joys of nature and river canyons when the time is right for you.

As we find our path, I am reminded of the words of Henry Kissinger who said: “A diamond is a chunk of coal that did well under pressure.”

May we all find the diamonds within us and our communities.

Yours Faithfully,

Peter Grubb
Founder & President
And the entire team at ROW Adventures