Canoe River Currents 

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Learn to paddle a canoe down the river!

The Canoeing River Currents Class is for anyone that wants to take a canoe down a river.  We will discover ways to successfully negotiate swift current and small rapids in open canoes with either one or two paddlers.  The Pacific Northwest has many spectacular rivers but most have strong current and can be tretcherous without the right skills.  Let us teach you the fundamentals of river canoeing by starting out with some review of flat water techniques and strokes.  After that we head down the river putting all your skills to use on a fun and enjoyable local trip.

  • Basic hydrology and whitewater anatomy
  • Review of how body, boat and blade work together
  • Basic body mechanics and efficiency of stroke
  • Forward and reverse paddling review
  • Sweep strokes
  • Draw strokes
  • Edging
  • Proactive and Re-active Bracing (high and low)
  • Swimming and self rescue in whitewater
  • Eddy turns
  • Peel Outs
  • Ferries
  • ...and more!


    Alder Creek Kayak & Canoe - 200 NE Tomahawk Island Dr, Portland, OR 97217, United States
  • After covering basic canoe strokes, learn to control your position in current.
  • Learn about safety and rescue in swift water.
  • Apply your skills to avoid obstacles, use river features, and enter/exit the current with confidence!
  • We will be meeting at the river.  You will be notified of the location by email. 

    We will wrap things up at the take-out of a local river. (TBD)

    What you will need for this course: (be sure to read to the bottom)

    We will be on the river during this class.  Be sure to bring  a sack lunch in a small drybag.

    If you are un-able to bring the items listed below please let us know as we can provide them if needed.

    We typically provide immersion wear in the form of either a neoprene wetsuit or nylon drysuit with latex gasket seals and neoprene boots.

    Only in the hottest summer months do we run courses without some form of immersion wear. The water is cold year round so you will need to bring layers to wear under the suits provided.

  • Sunglasses with retention device (i.e. Croakies, Chums, etc)
  • NO COTTON Synthetic top and bottom layers (thermal underwear, heavier wt. for cooler weather)
  • Nylon shorts and/or swimsuit for warmer days
  • Hiking style wool or synthetic socks
  • Water bottle
  • LUNCH small enough to pack into the boats
  • Towel and change of clothes for ride home
  • Money for Parking
  • Optional Gear:

  • Water proof camera
  • Hat
  • Sunscreen
  • River shoes or booties of your own
  • If you have your own drysuit, wetsuit, or other gear please let us know.  It's usually best to learn in what you own.  Just ask if you are not sure what to bring.

    We can provide all gear needed upon request!

    Gratuity:  It's NEVER expected but always appreciated.  If you feel your coaches / guides have done an exceptional job and made your experience a memorable one, then you can certainly show your appreciation by giving a tip. The amount is totally up to you. Many people believe that anyone in a service type of job (like restaurant and hotel employees, hair dressers and dog groomers, etc.) should get between 10-20% of the total cost of the service. That is not to say that’s what we suggest, but that’s what most people tip when they do tip. So, for instance, if your trip was $200.00, and your guide made your experience a memorable one, a $20-$40 tip would be generous and greatly appreciated!

    The Pacific Northwest is a dynamic and often unpredictable environment. All activities are run/fun rain or shine. All programs are conditions dependent and may change at any time at our discretion. In order to keep our programs affordable a minimum number of participants may be required. If we are unable to fill a program to a minimum requirement level we reserve the right to cancel the program. A full refund will be provided in the event of a cancelled or re-scheduled activity upon request. Please allow 48 hour notice for any cancellations or changes in your reservation. Give us a call at 503-285-0464. Cancellations within 48 hours of the program are NOT refundable.  To re-schedule a class you have cancelled within the restricted 48 hour period we will gladly credit you 50% towards the rescheduled class.  Thank you for signing up!  Please let us know if you have questions about this or any other policy here at Alder Creek.