We are a week away from the beginning of guide training season. Every year, we have to replace a handful of guides who have moved on to other things. We use our experienced guides to train the new guides, and the new people always bring a contagious burst of enthusiasm for the job.
We spend three full weeks teaching them to navigate the Colorado River near Moab, Utah. We train in Westwater Canyon, Cataract Canyon and on the day trip stretch of the Colorado River. Our first training trip will be through Desolation Canyon on the Green River.
The new guides learn food preparation, boating skills, history, archaeology, science, swiftwater rescue skills, first aid and even entertainment skills. It is a lot to learn, but we hire bright people who pick things up quickly. We also have a lot of resources (books, handouts, videos, etc.) that they can access so they can study even more on their own.
Sometimes we bring outside experts on our trips to teach about geology, history, or other important topics. The most common comment from these experts is, “your guides know as much about these things as I do.” It’s a nice compliment for our guides. We’re proud of all the effort they put in to being great at their job.