Carry me, water: the river rafting season begins in the regions

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The rafting season begins in many Russian regions. In Bashkiria, it is expected that about 3 thousand tourists will be rafting on the rivers of the republic from the end of April until the end of the May holidays. Traditionally, this type of active recreation is popular in Altai, Adygea, Karelia and the North Caucasus. However, as noted by representatives of the tourism industry, this is a potentially dangerous extreme fun, and even such a trifle as improperly selected shoes for rafting can turn into a tragedy. Details – in the material “Izvestia”.

The season has begun

The season of tourist rafting on the Zilim River has recently started in Bashkiria. According to the head of the Zilim Natural Park, Azamat Ibatullin, routes along the river are especially popular among residents and guests of the republic – more than 500 visitors a day are expected this year.


Photo: RIA Novosti / Vitaly Timkiv

According to the chairman of the State Committee for Emergency Situations Farit Gumerov, the number of people arriving for this purpose from the end of April to the end of the May holidays reaches three thousand. Among them are not only local residents, but also tourists from neighboring regions and the central part of Russia.

Now the start of the 2021 season is entering an active phase, and many regions are stepping up in this direction, President of the Russian Rafting Federation Alexei Shirokov told Izvestia.

The regions providing this service are, first of all, the Republic of Altai, here in the summer about 2 million tourists float. Next comes the Altai Territory, then the Republic of Adygea, the North Caucasus – now this direction is just opening up there, and many travel agencies are developing their own routes and inviting guides and instructors. Karelia is also traditionally famous for its routes. Now rafting is actively developing, including in the Far East, so everywhere you can choose a route of any complexity.

At this time, Bashkiria is always popular: the fact is that many rivers are interesting precisely in the spring, when there is melting, said Alexei Nikonorov, a member of the presidium of the Russian Federation of Sports Tourism, in a conversation with Izvestia. However, the choice of the place of the rafting is largely determined by personal preferences. “Those who love more extreme, now rushed to Karelia and partly to the South Urals and the Caucasus. Those who prefer a contemplative approach are mainly aimed at the middle lane – for example, the Voronezh, Kostroma regions, ”he said. Rafting on the rivers is possible not only on rafts, but also on kayaks, kayaks, catamarans.

Athletes carry a catamaran

Photo: RIA Novosti / Alexander Kryazhev

But in any region and on any river, the most important advice for a tourist is to carefully consider the choice of the product and the company with which you want to travel, emphasizes Aleksey Shirokov.

– Without a doubt, this is a potentially dangerous outdoor activity. It is necessary to find out which guides carry out the routes, where they are trained. If you are told that they are active athletes, then you can safely choose this company, – said the source of Izvestia. – Here, as in any tourism, there are tour operators and companies that are already selling a tourist product on the spot. Therefore, you need to immediately clarify the end point, who provides the implementation of the route. In addition, any tourist interested in rafting can contact the Rafting Federation for information or advice. Now we are on the way to creating a single information center for recreational rafting, where every vacationer in any region can choose a company that provides quality service and has guarantees from our specialized federation.

Safety in detail

The data of regional departments of the Ministry of Emergency Situations also testify to the danger of river rafting. In April, a 50-year-old resident of South Urals fell into the icy water from a kayak near Veselovka. There was another man on the kayak with him, but he managed to swim out. According to the search and rescue service of the Chelyabinsk region, the search for the missing kayaker was carried out all week, the body of a man was found three hundred meters downstream from the bridge near the village of Veselovka, where a group of tourists were resting.

Ministry of Emergency Situations

Photo: TASS / Egor Aleev

Security measures are a very important issue for fans of both calm and extreme rafting, said Alexander Kozlov, chairman of the board of the Moscow regional branch of the Russian Rafting Federation, in a conversation with Izvestia. First of all, many troubles occur due to carelessness, especially characteristic of young people.… But you have to be very careful with the river, because it does not forgive mistakes, warns Kozlov.

– A very important thing is knowing the route. Now, for example, spring routes with high water are especially dangerous due to water spills. When it goes in the mainstream, the route is well known and well described. But during a flood, everything seems to be the same, but in fact the water spills and can go between the trees. Trees can fall and lie across, and this is a completely different situation, because the water can flow faster. In addition, there were many cases when during the flood people clung to a twig or root, or even could not pass between the trees.

Attention even to seemingly small details in preparation for the rafting can save a person’s life, emphasizes Alexander Kozlov.

– Among those who go on serious hikes, there are those who frankly overestimate their strength. And among those who go on the initial hikes, there are many people who simply do not understand all the possible dangers. A trivial example is, for example, sat on a ship in boots. Now imagine that a man in these boots fell into the water. What happens: water is poured into the boots, and it turns out that the legs are pulled to the bottom like tied stones, – he says. – The same goes for the life jacket. For example, a vest has a harness that runs between the legs. What is it for: when a person falls into the water, if the vest is poorly drawn to the body, then he rises up and covers his face, and with a strong stream it can even rip it off. It would seem a trifle, but it is very important.

River rafting

Photo: TASS / Victor Klyushkin

In addition, if a group goes on a long hike, then it is obliged to inform the Emergencies Ministry, recalls the chairman of the board of the Moscow regional branch of the Russian Rafting Federation. If you do not return from the route in time, then something happened to you, and in this case the rescuers will be able to help. Almost every year, the department itself reminds of this: before the rafting, it is necessary to inform how many people will participate in it, as well as where and at what time the descent is planned.