Have you recently just started looking into booking a whitewater rafting trip? Are you now wondering what the different classifications mean?
Class defines the size the rapids on the trip are according to an objective white water standard. At AVA we want to make sure that when booking a trip you are fully informed about the type of whitewater that will be on your trip. Not only do we consider your safety at every moment, but we also want you to have the most fun on your trip.
Please also be aware this classification scale is a widely-used and objective. Rivers are a natural element and can change constantly. We do always reserve the right to change minimum age, fitness and weight requirements depending on water flows. Also, a section of river can be Class III when the water is low and high or it can bump a Class III section up to Class IV.
Whitewater river rafting is not like a fully controlled Disneyworld ride. We work with natural elements that change every day. But this is also why we stress safety, training and experience every day with our guides. Our guides average 8 years of experience, which is one of the highest in this industry.
Class 1: No waves or obstacles. Like sitting in your bathtub.
Class 2: Easy. Rapids with regular waves and wide channels.
Class 3: (AVA minimum age 6-7 years) Moderately difficult. Irregular waves and narrow channels. This is what we consider to be family-level whitewater rafting.
Class 4: (Minimum ages may vary) Difficult. Complex channels with obstacles to be avoided. Precise maneuvering.
Class 5: (Minimum ages may vary) Extremely difficult. Long rapids following each other consecutively.
Class 6: Considered unrunnable
We think the best way to determine the trip for you is based on physical level. You do not need to have whitewater rafting experience to go on a class V trip, but you do need to have the ability to paddle long and hard all the while listening to your guide. Each of our trips are graded with a physical levels from 1-6. Please find what to expect on each physical level below:
Here is another way to look at our trips:
*Beginner: All Ages and abilities – Level 1 trips
*Intermediate: All abilities & ages 6 and up – Level 2 and 3 trips
*Advanced: Active lifestyles – Level 4 trips
*Advanced +: Active and Adventurous – Level 5 and 6 trips
If at any time you are confused when booking a trip please call one of our knowledgeable staff at 800-370-0581 and they will be sure to put you on the right track to be sure that you are going to go on your dream adventure.