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White Water Sledging the Athabasca River

Listed under Extreme Challenge in Alberta, Canada.

Photo of White Water Sledging the Athabasca River
Photo by flickr user Jonathan Shield
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Although it wasn’t invented properly until the 1980s, riverboarding (or ‘hydrospeed’, as it is known in Europe) is possible almost everywhere; all you need is a fast-flowing river and a riverboard – a little like an ocean bodyboard but tougher and lighter, with handles. Most riverboarders also wear fins to help steer in difficult currents, and dangerous, possibly rocky, whitewater locations also require the use of helmets, knee pads and wrist guards.

As with bodyboarding, you can ride on your front or on one knee, using the front foot to help you steer. Your level of experience will determine the best choice of site, but for a real range of sites suitable for all ability levels, you can do no better than head for the Rocky Mountains. The best time to go is in Spring, when the glacial snows are melting and loading the rivers with clear, rushing, icy torrents. If you get tired, you can simply take time out to gaze at the incredible scenery. The Athabasca River has some of the most challenging rapids in the area and should definitely be on your list; start at the Athabasca Falls in Jasper National Park and work your way down.

Written by  larapiegeler.

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