Rafting the rapids

David
David Newell
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Exploring your own backyard

It is easy to miss things that are right under your nose sometimes.

Such is the case with the Exploits River, which Paul Rose, owner of Rafting Newfoundland at Riverfront Chalets said sometimes people from the area take for granted.

"We have a world class river running right through our town," he said. "It is rare to have a high end river running through a town where you can leave your house with your boat on your back and be on world class rapids.

Paul and Joy Rose have been taking groups on rafting trips down the Exploits River for several years, and have recently opened luxury chalets on the banks of the river. David Newell photo

It is easy to miss things that are right under your nose sometimes.

Such is the case with the Exploits River, which Paul Rose, owner of Rafting Newfoundland at Riverfront Chalets said sometimes people from the area take for granted.

"We have a world class river running right through our town," he said. "It is rare to have a high end river running through a town where you can leave your house with your boat on your back and be on world class rapids.

"People do not explore their own backyard and we have a pretty nice backyard here in central Newfoundland that people do not know about."

Together with his wife Joy, the Roses have been helping people appreciate the river for years with their rafting business on the river.

They recently added four chalets to their property located 20 kms west of Grand Falls-Windsor at Aspen Brook and continue to provide an Exploits experience second to none.

Despite the size of the river, you do not need to have previous experience in rafting to enjoy a day on the water.

"Most of our clients are beginners," Paul said. "We do get a few people who have rafted before and we get some who all of their holidays revolve around rafting and their vacation each year is to raft a different river.

"The Exploits is usually one of the best trips they have ever had, for sure."

He said there is a good mixture of whitewater and relaxing water on the river, but there is nothing still about it.

Visitors who take in a rafting trip with the Roses also have the opportunity to go for a swim on the journey, which starts at the Badger Chute and continues to the chalets. On the way, groups stop for a lunch - or "boil up" - to take away the hunger pangs created by paddling the river.

The business is a year-round operation, since snowmobiling and snowshoeing expeditions are offered in the winter.

Those trips have recently drawn the attention of Sledworthy magazine, and their representative Jonathan Simon said the treks and accommodations are wonderful.

Mr. Simon, a Grand Falls-Windsor native, and a group from the magazine travelled from the chalets to Hodges Hills and the Gaff Topsails three weeks ago and he said they had a great time.

"It was awesome," he said. "I have snowmobiled from the age of five, but had never been (to those locations) before. For central Newfoundland, this is one of the top three snowmobile tours, definitely."

Joy said they are noticing more and more people from the local area coming out to enjoy their excursions, and it is a great way to get away for a weekend with a group or your family.

Swimming in the river, she said, is something most people never forget.

"That is a highlight for some people," she said. "They love the swimming part, right at the Badger Chute. People who want a little more excitement can jump into the rapid and they get re-circulated up around to where they jumped in. It is a lot of fun."

For more information on Rafting Newfoundland at Riverfront Chalets, call 486-0892 or visit their website at www.raftingnewfoundland.com.

Organizations: Sledworthy magazine

Geographic location: Newfoundland, Grand Falls-Windsor, Exploits River

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