During September, the Certificate IV Outdoor Recreation students were given the chance to TEACH students RAFTING! Given charge of a handful of Certificate III Outdoor Recreation students and a handful of Rosny College participants, we were instructed to deliver an introduction into the art of rafting and the world as seen through the eyes of a rafting guide. Having recently gone through the process ourselves, we relished the chance to pass on our skills and knowledge of the river environment.
The low water levels didn’t dampen the spirits of our motley crew! The venues ranged from Plenty Railway Bridge for an introduction day into the world of rafting and white water, to a journey from Pump House – Hayes Corner, on the Derwent River; progressing finally to the Picton/Huon from Upper Bridge to Tahune, where the students caught eddies (the students having been told early on “that eddies were their friends”) and honed their skills reading the water and plotting their run down the river, whilst perfecting their strokes and control over the raft.
It was immensely satisfying to see the improvement of the students over such as short period of time. To see them ferrying across the current, catching eddies with precision and ease, calling crew commands and delivering briefings; it was a sight to behold.
Highlights included the tranquil beauty of the Picton River at low water, where Pink Robins perch atop the Native Pepper and ancient Huon Pines stand tall beside the waters; broken by the excitement of entering the Gorge and the thrill of the raft surging beneath you like a wild animal.
Seeing “log-o-diles” and platypus in the water of the Derwent and a rather vigorous game of King and Queen of the Derwent, which became quite competitive as fingers were pried from rafts in an attempt to be the last victor standing!
During the week a handful of students were ushered through the doorway into a new world and as for us, we gained the satisfaction from seeing our teaching take shape and have impact and hold meaning, as our students become raft guides before our eyes – as they gained their Guide a Raft on Moving Water, Grade 2!
Well done to the students – see you out on the river!