Rafting the Pacuare River

The alarm at 4:30am signalled the start of one of the main adventure elements of the trip. We would white water raft down the Pacuare river to a lodge in the middle of the jungles of Costa Rica. We would then spend some time hiking and doing various other activities on the second day and then do some grade 3 and 4 rapids on the final day.

The journey there took an hour or two longer than it should due to traffic. So we had a late breakfast at the hotel where our gear would be stored that was not coming along.

We had another induction with one of the guides, Jorge, who was telling us what to expect before climbing aboard our rafts. We divided the whole group between couples and singles, and the singles were the braver group. The rapids were fairly easy compared to others I have done elsewhere, but there was section where we jumped from a high rock and swam against the current to the other side then walked to a natural waterslide, and took the chance to run a rapid alone without a boat.

On top of that, at the very end, our guide Johny had the raft surf against the rapids with us paddling for all we were worth, for about 10 mins and we managed not to flip again. We were the only group who were ever offered the chance.


On the ongoing journey, the rapids were amazing, they were only 3’s, with 2 6’s, but Jonhy the guide made it very exciting, at one point we were stood up, arms around each other doing the rapids like a scream. I was moved to the front, partly due to my previous experience to help with the harder rapids and partly due to my GoPro.

No one fell in despite beaching us on a rock, more than once, surfing on the edge of a rapid and generally wringing every moment of wonder from the trip.

When rafting was done we headed back to the main office for some food, to see the photos taken during the rafting and to get clean!

The food was great though the accounting was poor for our being in the lodge... I was called back as they had missed drinks.