Harpers Ferry- Click for Full Article According to TripAdvisor, Harpers Ferry is a beautiful small town. The town is part historic village with many historic landmarks. "I'm not usually one for history, but the historical aspect is really interesting, and I just love the layout of the land and how the town is," said Aiden Brammeier, a Ranson resident. Talyn Underwood works at The Coffee Mill in town. She says she loves Harpers Ferry because it attracts people from all over. "We have a couple foreigners that come around from all different types of countries and everyone is just really nice, we make friendships," said Underwood. Many people say a big draw to the area is the easy access to the hiking trails. "There are a lot of hiking trails around here, but this is probably my favorite, absolutely," said Amy Talkington, a Harpers Ferry visitor. "And I keep finding more spots that I'm always being surprised and amazed by. All the different things we find even though I've been so many times, still finding new places," said Riley Ruments, a Harpers Ferry visitor. In addition to the hiking trails, there is rich history and scenic views. Dedrik Shafer and Tremaine Shafer, who are brothers, say their family moved out here not only because of the town's beauty, but because of the peace and quiet the town offers. "So we chose Harpers Ferry because it was one of the quietest places and peaceful and big stress relief off of my mom," said Tremaine Shafer.
For this month’s employee highlight we bring to you an employee who has been with us since 1997. Ed Shelley has been helping us in multiple different departments. Some days you may see him driving vehicles around, other days you may catch him guiding guests out on the river, but for the majority of the time, you will find him as our maintenance man. He makes sure everything at River Riders functions as smoothly as possible. Question: How long have you been with River Riders? Answer: Since 1997 Now that is some serious commitment! Thank you for being such a valued River Riders Employee! Question: How did you get into the guiding/adventure related industry? Answer: Skating, BMX, Mountain Biking, and the Army An extensive history of adventure is always a great start to working in this industry and a great way to spend your time off! Question: What’s the first memory you have of an adrenaline rush when you were a child? Answer: First time dropping in on a half-pipe while skateboarding Question: What’s the absolute craziest thing you’ve ever done? Answer: Running the rapids at great falls from pummel through pencil sharpener then through horseshoe to takeout. Now that is some big water! Next time take a video so we can all see! Question: What would you say to someone that wants adventure but doesn’t know how to make the time for it? Answer: Make the time because you live every day but you only die once. Question: Most awkward moment on the river…go… Answer: Getting to put in and realizing we had forgotten the boats Well I’m pretty sure if you want to go rafting, it’s pretty important to have the rafts Question: What did you have for breakfast this morning? Answer: Sausage, egg, and cheese sandwich Question: How do you relax? Answer: I work slightly less It’s always good to take a slight break, even if it is for a moment. Good for you for constantly working hard! Question: What’s an adventure or destination on your bucket list? Answer: To raft the Mississippi from Headwaters to the Gulf of Mexico. Just like Huckleberry Finn & Tom Sawyer Now that is a bucket list item if I've ever heard one! Use all the experience from your time of rafting for it!
Welcome back to another episode of Behind the Thrills! We are excited to kick off this 2019 season with a BANG! Today, we bring you a person who has been an absolute blessing to us in this endeavor. This person is none other than our Director of Operations, Alex Tamez! Alex has been with us for a while now and recently came on board as our Director of Operations, and since, has been a big help! Alex comes bundled together with her trusty canine companion, Nala, who makes the office a lot of fun. Question: How long have you been with River Riders? Answer: “6 years.” That’s a long time! We hope you had plenty of time in between to enjoy the river. Question: How did you get into the guiding/adventure related industry? Answer: “Grew up with a family member who was a guide and admired the adventures each day.” Sounds like you got some adventures very early, so lucky. Looks like you were destined to be in the guiding business! Question: What’s the first memory you have of an adrenaline rush when you were a child? Answer: “Riding one of those big wheel tricycles down a really big hill” Question: What’s the absolute craziest thing you’ve ever done? Answer: Joined the Military Hahaha regardless, we thank you for your service! Question: What would you say to someone that wants adventure but doesn’t know how to make the time for it? Answer: “Just go for it” Words to live by. Question: Most awkward moment on the river…go… Answer: “I pulled off to the side of the river and was waiting for the rest of the trip to catch up, when I started just swinging my leg and fell into the river…” Shall we remind you of the story of the tortoise and the hare? Question: What did you have for breakfast this morning? Answer: “Sausage, egg, and cheese biscuit… and a cup of ice.” Hahaha, fun fact about Alex, she always has a cup of ice with her and has a professional ice maker. She even has a cup of ice during this interview. Question: How do you relax? Answer: “Camping and bonfires” Nothing like the great outdoors during some beautiful summer nights. Hope you brought enough Marshmallows for everyone! Question: What’s an adventure or destination on your bucket list? Answer: “Homesteading off grid in Alaska” Alaska is much colder than here, but the summers are absolutely gorgeous, what a cool goal! Thanks Alex for all your hard work you are putting in to help us get ready for this upcoming season! It's awesome good to see some behind the scenes that's also been a guide with us for a while. We look forward to seeing what you bring for the 2019 season. For more River Riders info, check out a complete list of all of our Harpers Ferry adventure activities or explore some of the lodging in Harpers Ferry that you can utilize while at our resort!
Nothing builds character, confidence and friendship like our action-packed, fun and unique summer camp program. River Riders Outdoor Adventure Camp located in Harpers Ferry, WV provides weekly sessions all summer long to give your kids the ultimate outdoor adventure experience. Register today at: www.outdooradventurecamp.com
River Riders Employee Highlight The Guide Life: Behind the Thrills with Kaitlyn Unger Our employee highlight for this month is so good, it’s like we staged it. Except we didn’t. Kaitlyn Unger simply answered our questions honestly, and basically…our job of selling the adventure industry is now done! Seriously, let’s just let Kaitlyn talk. Finishing up her 4th season with us, Kaitlyn loves her interaction with guests as a River Guide, and in her answers below touches on some very important elements of the adventure industry. Question: What was your history before River Riders? Answer: “To be honest, I was scared of everything involving adventure until I came to River Riders as a kid for the Outdoor Adventure Camp. It really opened my eyes to learning about safety precautions, so that you can safely have a great time on the water. Learning about trusting my gear was the hardest part.” See, we love this! At River Riders, we are so passionate about safety and quality gear, because we know when we’re safe, it allows for so much more adventure! Question: How did you get into the guiding/adventure related industry? Answer: “I was first introduced to this company (River Riders) around 8 years old when I attended the Summer Camp. I had so much fun that I told all my friends about my week of adventure. Later, I started dating a rafting guide that worked here, and he ended up bringing me to a New Year’s get together at the Campground. I didn't even work there at the time, but the people at the party made me feel so welcome. At that point, I realized the community/family aspect I had been missing out on, and I decided to apply. I am so grateful I did. This place has become my safe haven, my adrenaline rush, my family gathering, and everything I never knew I needed.” Wow…tearing up. We love having you as part of our ‘family’. Question: What’s the first memory you have of an adrenaline rush when you were a child? Answer: “My first glimpse into adrenaline was cliff jumping with my Uncle Stuart. He always pushed me to trust my reactions and to trust the water.” It’s that whole trust your instinct thing, and we agree! Don’t push past your comfort zone, but trust in yourself and your surroundings. Question: What’s the absolute craziest thing you’ve ever done? Answer: “The craziest thing I've ever done was fly my Uncle’s plane! Once we got up to proper altitude, he let me steer for about 10 minutes! My heart was racing the whole time. After that, we practiced stall-outs .... let's just say I prefer to keep both feet on solid ground.” And by solid ground do you mean the rolling rapids of the river?! Sounds like you’re just a bit more amphibious than aviator. Question: Most awkward moment on the river. Go… Answer: “You want me to pick just ONE?! Oh boy ... I would say my most awkward moments have included me swimming in flat water, then when it's time to get back in the raft, my guests will often want to help pull me back in. I tell them “No it's okay, I've got it”, but they just grab my shoulder straps and struggle to pull me in. Because it’s next to impossible to pull someone in with their life jacket on, I end up hanging there feeling like an awkward fish at the end of a line. When they finally get me over the side after numerous attempts, I awkwardly flop into the bottom of the boat ... very unpleasant for both parties.” We hear ya…there’s just no graceful way to get back in a raft. But that adds to the adventure all the more! Question: What would you say to someone that wants adventure but doesn’t know how to make the time for it? Answer: “Adventure isn’t going to wait around for you. You've got to get yourself out there and take chances. Instead of planning that day to relax, plan that day around learning more about yourself by getting up close and personal with your fears.” Love it! Don’t let your fears define you…let them push you to be better. Question: What did you have for breakfast this morning? Answer: “Big glass of Almond Milk, banana and some coffee. My appetite normally doesn't kick in till after I get off the river.” And then we’re sure it hits full force. Good thing we have some great food options around here! Question: How do you relax? Answer: “Relax? What does that mean? Don't you know that if you live the life of a Raft guide, all your free moments are filled with shenanigans and adventuring with your friends. I like to take my dog for sunrise and sunset walks. It's nice to find an open, secluded, quiet spot to just take a deep breath.” Haha, well that’s true. That’s why you guys are just so fun – because to you, all of life is an adventure and relaxing means finding more of it! Question: What’s an adventure or destination on your bucket list? Answer: “One of my goals is to eventually take my camper on a cross country adventure. BUT I never know what life has in store for me. Every day seems to become an adventure one way or another. I love my life and I strive to make it the best.” Big dreams, chill expectations…makes for a pretty happy life. We like your style, Kaitlyn! Kaitlyn, we are stoked to have you as part of our team and family. You make us all better and you remind us why we do what we do! If hearing Kaitlyn’s answers makes you want to hang out with the raft guides as much as it does us, then make sure you plan your rafting trip for next year. Don’t forget that we have BOGO Gift Cards available starting on Black Friday for our Christmas gift specials. Come back on Black Friday to get yours! For more River Riders info, check out a complete list of all of our Harpers Ferry adventure activities or explore some of the lodging in Harpers Ferry that you can utilize while at our resort!
River Riders Employee Highlight The Guide Life: Behind the Thrills with Ian Snyers Recently we’ve been happily overwhelmed (and super stoked!) by all the positive reviews we have had online concerning our guests’ experience while here at River Riders. Thank you all for lovin’ on us a little online! Our goal is to provide you with a safe, fun and totally positive experience, so it makes us happy to know we’ve done just that. And that brings us to the point of this article…our employee highlight. Our employee for this month’s highlight won’t be found out on the river or up in the trees when you visit (at least not most of the time). But that’s because he’s the one behind the scenes making sure your experience is safe, fun and positive! And according to your feedback, Ian Snyers - our Sales and Service Shift Supervisor - is doing his job well! Ian has been with River Riders for 3 years now, and started his love with adventure years ago by kayaking the Shenandoah and racing motocross. Question: How did you get into the guiding/adventure related industry? Answer: “By having a drive and getting out and doing it! Nothing is more enjoyable than some time on the water. It’s always fun to have new adrenaline-based experiences!” We agree, Ian! Your drive and adventurous spirit bring a lot to our River Riders team. Question: What’s the first memory you have of an adrenaline rush when you were a child? Answer: “The first time I ever rode a dirt bike when I was just 8 years old, it was my birthday and that was my birthday present.” Awesome birthday present! Your parents sound great…and maybe just as crazy as you! Question: What’s the absolute craziest thing you’ve ever done? Answer: “When I first started racing motocross, I wasn't quite sure how fast I could go. So I would end up over-jumping many jumps on the track and breaking a lot of handlebars. I went through at least 10 different handlebars within the first couple of years.” Wow…that’s a minor expense - new handlebars every other month…Seriously, you have some pretty epic parents. Question: Most awkward moment on the river. Go… Answer: “First time I ever did the White Water Kayaking, I flipped on the very first rapid. For some reason, I always seem to flip on the first rapid.” If you’re going to flip, might as well get it over with! Then you can enjoy the rest of the trip regardless of whether you stay right-side-up. Question: What would you say to someone that wants adventure but doesn’t know how to make the time for it? Answer: “Think of an adventure like a great escape. You get to spend great moments with friends and family that will last a lifetime.” Love this! Work can wait. The ‘lifetime moments’ need to happen now. Question: What did you have for breakfast this morning? Answer: “Yogurt and a bagel - easy food to grab on the go!” We hear ya! When there’s so much adventure awaiting you every morning, who has time to sit down for breakfast? Question: How do you relax? Answer: “My relaxation time comes from spending time camping or spending time in a kayak. Nothing is more relaxing than spending some hours cruising down the Potomac/Shenandoah in a nice kayak, especially after the sun goes down!” We like your style. Sunset kayaking is the best. Question: What’s an adventure or destination on your bucket list? Answer: “I’ve wanted to go to the Grand Canyon for a while. My parents recently moved out to Arizona and when I go to visit in December, I’m very excited to see that with my own eyes!” Excited for you…Enjoy the view and tag us with your pics (and maybe snag a trip down the Colorado River while you’re there)! We’re grateful for all that Ian brings to our team. While he may not be the guide you have while on the river or up in the trees, he can be given much of the credit for an awesome adventure experience. Thank you, Ian, for sticking with us and giving your all to our company and our guests. For more River Riders info, check out a complete list of all of our Harpers Ferry adventure activities or explore some of the lodging in Harpers Ferry that you can utilize while at our resort!
Video of the Harpers Ferry Canopy Tour at River Riders through the eyes of staffer Marilyn Flemming. This two and a half to three-hour spectacular, professionally guided Harpers Ferry zipline tour answers your call for adventure.Zip through the treetops as you ride our network of eight ziplines, including the fan-favorite free fall rappel at the end, and navigate the adventure sky bridges towering above the forest floor. As you zip, take in the mesmerizing views of the Potomac River and the Harpers Ferry Water Gap, and be sure to ask your tour guide about the local wildlife, trees, plants, and rock cliffs that surround you on your West Virginia ziplining tour.
The River Riders rafting trip will guide you through the splashing white water of the Shenandoah and Potomac Rivers near Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, and is located where Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia come together. This 7 mile river excursion provides a wonderful experience for beginner to intermediate paddlers looking to enjoy class I-III (I-II+ in lower water) white water rapids and breathtaking scenery. River Riders has the expertise, guides, and equipment to meet all your outdoor adventure needs. Come play, only an hour away from both Washington, DC and Baltimore, MD!
River Riders Aerial Adventure Park Guide The Guide Life: Behind the Thrills with Cody Rush Our employee highlight for August has been with us since April, but has been ‘around’ us his whole life. Cody Rush grew up in Harpers Ferry and says he loves the beauty and adventure of the area. Cody has started in our Aerial Adventure Park this year, and he was the employee of the month for June! He’s always safe, fun and positive. Here’s a little more about Cody: Question: How did you get into the guiding/adventure related industry? Answer: “I grew up in the beautiful Harpers Ferry area, so when Chris Goodell said River Riders was hiring, I went for it!” Awesome, we’re glad to have a fellow adventurer that loves this area as much as we do! Question: What’s the first memory you have of an adrenaline rush when you were a child? Answer: “Dropping into a half pipe on a skateboard” Ummm…where was your mother? No seriously, we love it. Question: What’s the absolute craziest thing you’ve ever done? Answer: “I had a glass of orange juice after I brushed my teeth.” Yea, that’s….epic. We’re sitting here wondering how in the world you got through that! Question: Most awkward moment on the river. Go… Answer: “My first couple of days training, I was at lunch break and OJ squirted in my eyes and everyone saw.” That orange juice is brutal stuff! Question: What would you say to someone that wants adventure but doesn’t know how to make the time for it? Answer: “Learn how to tell yourself you need a break after you’ve been working, that you’ve earned the free time.” Work hard. Play hard. We like it. Question: What did you have for breakfast this morning? Answer: “Sausage, egg and cheese breakfast sandwich…oh, and a glass of orange juice.” It’s kind of weird that you don’t really seem to like orange juice at all. Question: How do you relax? Answer: “Video games and peeling mandarin oranges” Aaah, yes…peeling oranges is on our list of most relaxing things to do as well. Question: What’s an adventure or destination on your bucket list? Answer: “I would love to visit King Ranch in Florida and walk through the endless fields of trees and shrubs.” Just had to Google this one. We should have figured…King Ranch is a citrus farm! No doubt you have the strongest immune system on staff, Cody. We’re excited to have Cody on board with us this season. Hoping he stays around for many more! If you see Cody around, make sure you give him something citrus flavored, and we’re pretty sure you’ll gain a friend for life. For more information about our staff, visit us here. Find more information and booking details on our Harpers Ferry Aerial Adventure Park so you can go visit Cody before the season ends!
Our employee highlight for June is a new-to-us river guide. Welcome, to Mark Ulbrich! Also proficient in rock climbing, Mark is an exciting addition to our river guide team here at River Riders. Through various ventures, he’s been a part of West Virginia’s outdoor adventure scene for years. This season has already started off with a bang for Mark, as he jumped right in to all the commotion during the flooding in Harpers Ferry this spring, helping all of us here navigate the challenges. Now he’s on to exciting adventures on the river instead of fighting back the river. Here’s a little about Mark! Question: How long have you been with River Riders? Answer: “Over a month” Welcome aboard, Mark! We’re all in for an exciting season. Question: How did you get into the guiding/adventure related industry? Answer: “It sounded fun.” Really, that’s what it boils down to for all of us…it’s just fun. Pure and simple. Question: What’s the first memory you have of an adrenaline rush when you were a child? Answer: “I was playing a game of ‘who could get closest to the horse’. I won…but also ended up getting kicked into a fence.” So I guess in the end, the horse won? Either way, we’re glad you got back up and kept finding more adventure! Question: What’s the absolute craziest thing you’ve ever done? Answer: “I was in Colorado and wanted to climb this glacier called St. Mary’s Glacier. I didn’t have any gear so I found two sharp rocks and started climbing. I ended up slipping and fell 80 feet before coming to a stop 20 feet from a cliff edge.” We suppose now would be an appropriate time to say “Children, do not try this at home.” But seriously, wow…impressive resilience. You keep coming back for more! Question: Most awkward moment on the river. Go… Answer: “I don’t know…probably one of the countless times I’ve flipped on accident!” Well now…we’ve certainly never done that…ahem Question: What would you say to someone that wants adventure but doesn’t know how to make the time for it? Answer: “Make time for it.” Period. Okay…point taken. Question: What did you have for breakfast this morning? Answer: “Microwave Chimichanga” All we can say is...good thing your ‘office space’ is in the good ole outdoors. Question: How do you relax? Answer: “Reggae music” Love it. No one said you couldn’t be a beach bum on the riverside. Question: What’s an adventure or destination on your bucket list? Answer: “I want to climb Fitz Roy in Patagonia” No, he’s not talking about the clothing brand. Patagonia is actually a region in the Andes mountains at the tip of South America. And the Mt. Fitz Roy climb boasts plenty of adrenaline, thrill and adventure. Mark, we hope you make it there and send us some pics! Everyone lives life from a paradigm of some sort. And when we find someone that lives it from a ‘thirst for adventure’, we know that’s the type of person we want on our team. Mark, thanks for bringing your expertise and love for adventure to the River Riders family! Make sure you say hello to Mark when you see him this season. Schedule your white water rafting adventure now! To see more of our river guides check out our staff page.