Volunteers Register here
The 2023 Annual Whitewater Canoe and Kayak School will be held June 9-11, 2023 at the Hiwassee/Ocoee Scenic River State Park located at 404 Spring Creek Road, Delano, Tennessee on the Hiwassee River.
This school is for beginner whitewater canoe and kayak paddlers up to advanced paddlers ages 12 and up. Instructional opportunities will include on and off-river lessons covering orientation and logistics; terminology and river signals; stroke work, self and assisted rescue; fundamentals of river features; whitewater practice such as eddy turns, ferries and surfing; assessing current environmental conditions; and paddling group dynamics. On-water instruction is based on skill level.
Classes may begin on Parksville Lake to work on self and assisted rescue techniques and advance to the Hiwassee River or the Ocoee River. Our registration form will request information about paddling skill to help our instructors organize classes. Our main goal is to provide participants with quality skill-level based instruction on all the tools to have fun and be safe on the water! This is a fun filled, educational weekend for family and friends and is a unique occasion to learn new skills from certified instructors and to meet experienced paddlers who love to teach and enjoy developing new enthusiasts for the sport.
What to Bring: You must furnish and keep up with your own equipment for the school. If you do not have kayak or canoe equipment, you should be able to rent from a local outdoor retailer near your home. The following is a minimum list of equipment necessary for the school:
Kayakers: Whitewater Kayak (fits your weight and height) Paddle (appropriate for your grip and length) Spray Skirt (be sure it fits the cockpit and your waist) Helmet (appropriate for whitewater and head size) PFD (Personal Flotation Device- Type III) Flotation –Air bags
Canoeists: Whitewater Solo or Tandem Canoe, Paddle(s) (a spare is nice to have), Flotation –Air bags, Helmet, PFD
ALL PADDLERS SHOULD HAVE: Exposure Protection – polypropylene, wool, paddling jacket, wetsuit or drysuit NO COTTON! The Hiwassee water is COLD- You will need extra layers. Carry with you in dry bag: River booties or other foot protection (no sandals) – You will be walking on rocks! Dry bag – for keeping lunch, extra clothing, camera and valuables dry, Sunglasses with retainers, Nose clips (optional), Sunblock (oil free), Water Bottle (hydration is very important on the river)
*Leave valuable rings at home! Each year, a paddler loses a special ring on the river.
For more information, email Whitewater Canoe and Kayak School here.