Presentation of rafting sport and frequently asked questions
Whitewater rafting is a sport that consists to navigate a portion of a river aboard a inflatable boat (raft) and operated by the whole team using paddles. The crew is mostly composed of a guide who uses his paddle as a rudder and coordinates the rest of the group. Rafting allows to descend rivers of all levels and usually up to 8 people on the same boat.
Originally these boats were designed for military purposes and for expeditions in the United States in order to progress on rivers.
The practice of rafting as a leisure activity started in the 1940s in the USA thanks to the military boats that were diverted from their original use.
It is in the 80’s that rafting arrives in France thanks to the whitewater sports that are becoming more and more popular. Aquadesign is one of the first brands to manufacture Rafts in France.
There is a International Federation of Rafting (IRF)
Today rafting is a very popular summer activity in the mountains, where the most turbulent rivers are found. It's one of the most popular summer activities in Serre Chevalier
The valley of Serre Chevalier Briançon is crossed by the Guisane, river that takes its source at the Col du Lautaret and runs in the Durance at Briançon. It is navigable from Le Casset just above Monetier-les-Bains. At this place it is fed by several glacial tributaries that give it its blue color and enough volume of water to navigate it in rafting. In winter the Guisane is at the lowest water level, then in the spring with the snowmelt it reaches its highest level (May/June) to go down gently until the next winter.The spring and summer are therefore the most favourable periods for rafting on the Guisane.
The water of Guisane stays cool all year round because it is mainly fed by snowmelt and glaciers melt. It oscillates around 10 degrees Celcius. It’s why in rafting you are equipped with Neoprene clothes specially designed to protect you from cold water.
Rafting is a summer activity in Serre Chevalier as you can do as a family. The minimum age to register at the activity is 7 years as long as you know how to swim. For bookings of 4 persons or more a discount is applied for the family trip.
The Rafting activity in Serre Chevalier is open to all, you only require to know how to swim and be in good physical shape. To discover the activity or to do it with children you should opt for the Upper Guisane between Le Casset and Saint-Chaffrey, named family rafting.For the most sporty and those who are looking for strong sensations you should opt for Lower Guisane between Villeneuve and Briancon, named adrenaline rafting. It is also possible to choose the complete route of the Guisane, which is to navigate on the two previous routes in one descent.
Yes, it is an obligation. By registering for a rafting activity, you will sign a certificate stating that you know how to swim at least 25m.
A private rafting descent is possible, you only need to contact us to let us know your ask.