International River Guide Training – Nepal, Gearing up for the Class of 2013 in tail end of cyclone Phailin

Touch down Nepal 12th October – just as the Cyclone came over from India. Having lost most of its ferocity on the Indian coast it decided to dump 3 days of heavy rain on us in Kathmandu. Luckily the first few days were myself  (Ant ) and Gerry as course directors spending time planning the program, drinking coffee indoors and generally hibernating from the wet stuff.

Strange really as its this wet stuff that we are here for and how we make our living! Just in a warmer format!

8 am this morning over breakfast the conversation between the two of us was about how much more rain could there be? After research of forecasts, calls to river sides and the debate over staying dry an extra day in Kathmandu or stick to plan with a night in a tent, we needed to make a call – stick to plan, or change due to raising water levels. More importantly was which one of us had the comfort of the guide seat  in the raft and who was out front in kayak looking for lines with an additional 2 metres of water!

An hour later, rain had stopped, reports of levels having peaked, so we are sticking to the plan – (maybe just throw the first aid into the first day rather than the middle of the course, and this may buy us some time for levels to drop! ) Thats river running in the Himalayas!

Now in its 5th successful year we are awaiting tonight’s briefing with the Class of 2013 before heading out to the Trusuli river, our home for the next 5 days and the first part of the program – initial guiding skills, first aid and white water rescue certification.

Each year students from around the world join us here in Nepal – The home of some of the best white water in the world, multi day river expeditions and everything from small technical rivers to raging big volume – and thanks to the recent rain, that little bit extra!

All of these students come with one aim – to train to become river guides and work around the world in the growing adventure travel industry.

Gerry and I have put our combined 50 years of experience into producing what we consider to be the most comprehensive river guide training program in the world and the results are out there…working in Uganda, Canada, the US, New Zealand… and the course has gained international recognition.

So part one….briefing tonight, head out to the river tomorrow, 4 hours jeep drive to our base at Royal Beach Camp to stay with our host and good friend Ram. 5 days later we move to Pokhara for a rest day before part 2 of the course. I’ll update the blog from there to let you know how they all got on and add part two of the IRGT course.

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