How AO Rafting Parties Down in the Off-Season

Posted December 10, 2013 by Malina

DSCF5229“You work for a rafting company?  It must be dead this time of year—what do you do all day?”

Oh, not much.

Here’s a partial taste of what we do this time of year:

Winterisation of our River Office property includes pouring antifreeze in the toilets, removing shower heads, shutting off all irrigation…..and then fixing the pipes that inevitably break anyway…..

300+ PFDs are washed, inspected and repaired if needed. Same for 200+ splash jackets and a couple hundred wetsuits, helmets and paddles.

Broken oars abound: completely trashed ones go to the burn pile……and the survivors are repaired, sanded, given new rubber tips, and re-varnished.

Cracked coolers, tipsy tables, rusted dutch ovens, and dirty fire pans all get TLC.

Com kits are scoured for missing forks, bent spoons and greasy pot holders….and every surface that touches food is scrubbed and bleached within an inch of its life.

Boats are unrolled and inspected—tears, abrasions and outright blow-outs are tenderly (ok, maybe not tenderly, aorafting_riveroffice2013maybe with blasting music and colorful language at times) mended.

Don’t even get me started on vehicles…….oil changes for the entire fleet…off season maintenance…detailed inspections of what, 7 buses, 5 or 6 vans…..whatever, it’s a lot!

And that’s not even mentioning all the behind-the-scenes paperwork, phone calls and scull-drudgery that goes into running a rafting company from the office side of things.  Let’s just say that many snacks are provided unless Upper Management wants a riot on its hands.

“A rafting company in winter—must be boring!”

“Yeah,” I reply, “there’s really nothing much going on.”

(Top picture:  An army of picnic tables marched into the distance, waiting to be cleaned and given a fresh coating of preservative….Bottom: A snowy day in Lotus means one thing: crossing fingers that all the pipes are turned off and well-insulated!)



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