What is Rafting?
Rafting is a sport that is practiced in whitewater and consists of sailing a portion of the river in teams aboard an unsinkable inflatable boat (raft) and manoeuvred by the whole team using paddles or oars. Most of the time, the crew consists of a helmsman who uses his paddle as a rudder and coordinates the rest of the group. Rafting allows you to go down rivers of all levels and generally up to 8 people on the same boat.
What is the history of Rafting?
Originally these boats were designed for military use and for expeditions to the United States in order to progress on rough rivers.
The practice of rafting as a leisure activity started in the 1940's in the USA thanks to military boats that were diverted from their original use.
It is in the 80's that rafting arrived in France thanks to whitewater sports which became more and more popular. Aquadesign is one of the first brands to manufacture Rafts in France.
There is an International Rafting Federation (IRF).
Today rafting is a popular summer activity in the mountains where the rivers are the most turbulent. In Serre Chevalier it is one of the most popular summer activities.
What is the river that flows in Serre Chevalier Briançon?
The valley of Serre Chevalier Briançon is crossed by the Guisane, a river which takes its source at the Col du Lautaret and flows into the Durance at Briançon. It is navigable from the Casset just above Monêtier-les-Bains. At this point it is fed by several glacial tributaries which give it its turquoise blue colour and enough volume of water for rafting. In winter the Guisane is at its lowest water level, that is to say it is at its lowest level, then in spring with the melting of the snow it reaches its highest level (May/June) to gently descend until the following winter. Spring and summer are therefore the most favourable periods for rafting on the Guisane river in Serre Chevalier.
What is the water temperature of the Guisane?
The water of the Guisane remains cool all year round because it is mainly fed by the melting snow and the melting glaciers. It oscillates around 10 degrees Celcius. This is why when rafting you are equipped with neoprene clothing specially designed to protect you from the cold in the water.
Can I go rafting with my family in Serre Chevalier?
Rafting is a summer activity in Serre Chevalier that you can do with your family. The minimum age to sign up for the activity is 7 years old provided you can swim. For bookings of 4 or more people a reduction is applied for the Haute-Guisane course.
Which rafting route to choose in Serre Chevalier?
The rafting activity in Serre Chevalier is open to all provided you can swim and are in good physical condition. To discover the activity or to do it with children, you have to choose the Haute-Guisane course between Le Casset and Saint-Chaffrey, called "Découverte". For the more sporty and those looking for thrills you should opt for the Basse-Guisane route between Villeneuve and Briançon, called "Sensation". It is also possible to opt for the full course of the Guisane, which is the same as navigating the two previous courses in one descent.
What equipment is provided during the rafting activity?
We provide you with all the equipment you need to go rafting in safety and warmth :
-A 3mm Neoprene pants by Aquadesign.
-A 3mm Neoprene jacket by Aquadesign.
-A pair of socks Neoprene 3mm Aquadesign.
-A helmet EN1385 normed specially designed for whitewater.
-A Rafting Vest ISO 12402-4 compliant with current legislation.
-A simple paddle designed for rafting.
-A basketball option if you don't have one.
Do you have to know how to swim to go rafting?
Yes, it's an obligation. When you register for a rafting activity you will sign a certificate stating that you can swim at least 25m.
I want a private rafting trip, is it possible?
A private rafting descent is possible, your can directly book your trip on our website or just contact us with your request.