Here at Tumalo Creek, it’s no secret that we want to help create life-long paddlers who consider kayaking part of who they are, not just what they do. But we also know this doesn’t happen overnight.
If you are looking for a challenge with big-time rewards, whitewater kayaking offers both in healthy doses. It takes some dedication, but most boaters would agree it’s well worth the effort.
Sign up for Tumalo Creek’s Full Immersion Whitewater Kayaking Weekend, and you’ll experience a complete introduction to the sport in just two and a half days. Our expert instructors will keep you engaged on the river while gently encouraging you to challenge yourself. Participants will get the opportunity to run a Class II+ rapid by the end of the weekend.
The course begins Friday evening from 5:30-8:00 p.m. (Sa-Su, 9-6) in the pool behind the shop, where you will learn essential safety techniques and be introduced to basic paddle strokes. We’ll spend Saturday practicing our skills in the gentle rapids on the Deschutes River, and Sunday, we’ll run a longer stretch of the McKenzie or another nearby Class II river.
Tumalo Creek provides all kayak gear, but please dress to get wet. We recommend warm, quick-drying underlayers, with dry tops, dry suits or wet suits. (We have dry suits or wet suits you can borrow.) Even in warmer weather, dry tops are recommended as the temperature of the river can be forty degrees or less. Also bring plenty of high-energy food, including lunch. Bring a towel and a change of clothes for the end of the day.
We do not take online reservations within 24 hours of the class. Please call the shop to reserve your spot within that time period: 541.317.9407. We require a minimum class size, so periodically we need to reschedule due to low enrollment.
The first evening will be spent in our own roll pool depending on the weather. We will discuss boats, proper fit, spray skirts, paddles, helmets and safety equipment. We’ll then get into the pool for more practical instruction on how all this equipment is used.
On Saturday, the crew will move onto the Deschutes River where you will be introduced to critical paddle skills and focus on boat control. Boaters will also begin to develop a knowledge of how to “read” moving water and how to identify and safely negotiate river features like rocks, wood and rapids.
On Sunday, the class will be ready to transfer their developing skills to a real white water river. We will run a Class II+ section on the McKenzie River near Blue River, Oregon.
Get ready to have a blast while putting into practice all of your recently acquired river running techniques.
We also offer a Women’s Specific Whitewater Class in June that we recommend to those who would benefit from an all-female environment. New this summer we’ll be teaching weekly Thursday Skill-Building Whitewater Clinics at the Bend Whitewater Park across from the shop. In the summer months kayakers can perfect their roll in our solar-heated outdoor pool with independent roll practices, and in the winter, join us at Juniper Swim and Fitness for our Brace & Roll Clinics every Sunday evening.