The challenge of a turbulent river is no less than that of the rugged mountains. The icy heights of the Himalayas are the source of some of India’s mighty rivers. Fed by innumerable streams they race along tortuous boulder strewn beds, cutting deep gorges and breaking into silvery white rapids. The term ‘White water’ refers to foamy and whitish appearance of fast flowing water. The white water river rafting is quite thrilling and adventurous. With the intricate network of Mountain Rivers flowing through a myriad of different colors of rocky Gorges, forests, flowers and high mountain villages, the hills provide ideal locals for the perfect water adventure.
The sport of white water river rafting calls for a triumph over the swift, swirling river as it gushes past spectacular mountains. It is practiced mainly in the upper reaches where the water is wild and white as it froths and foams, crashing against narrow gorges, rocky outcrops and buy falls at deep gradients. The suitable period for river running depends on the adequacy of water volume. Thus September – November and March – April – May are most appropriate. The equipment required is ordinary outdoor gear, goggles, antiseptic cream and a liking for getting wet.
Man is always dreaming up of new adventures. River rafting is another adventurous sport, which has been practiced by men through years. Rafting is a white water sport. The term white water refers to foamy and whitish appearance of fast flowing water. During the past 15 years or so, Rubber Rafts, Canoes and Kayaks and other crafts, have run many of the great rivers in India. Apart from the logistic arrangements regarding the transportation of boats to the starting points and again at the end of the journey to transport them back there are no serious problems in river running. River running in the white waters is extremely thrilling but it can also be risky.
One of the great advantages of rafting is to travel leisurely through the varied terrain and enjoy interaction with the locals and take photographs. In river running each day could hold promise of new discoveries. Most travel agencies have included rafting in their trekking itineraries. They use the most modern unsinkable rubber rafts and have a set of reasonably trained river guides who have also developed some expertise in cooking and first aid.
River running is usually organized early in the morning until mid or late afternoon when the camp is set up on some secluded area on the beach. Travel agencies have fairly good logistic support and delicious meals are cooked in the camp. River trips are generally safe and can be enjoyed by families and holidaymakers of all ages. It would be desirable to insure that the inflatable rubber rafts are of reasonably good quality and are specially meant for river running. Most rafts are specially outfitted for safety and are virtually unsinkable with an independently inflatable compartment. Each traveler is provided with a life jacket as well as waterproof kitbags for clothes and watertight boxes for cameras etc. A trained crew, arranged by travel agencies does the rowing of these rafts, and they usually confirm to international standards.