Playtime for Guides at Glenwood Adventure Company


For many jobs, work and play time are separated. You know when you work, and you know when you play. Lately at GAC, I haven’t been able to tell a difference.

First off, we’ve begun commercially running the adrenaline-filled class III-IV Shoshone rapids through the beautiful Glenwood Canyon. With the water level dropping, we’re able to raft more of the Colorado while still offering relaxing and scenic trips on the Roaring Fork River. On the Colorado River, there’s nothing better than getting to shriek commands to a group of people you’ve just met while immediately maneuvering yourself through 20 minutes of intense rapids. “I promise I’m a nice person,” I say. But their first impression is always a crazy tyrant.


Entrance Exam, ManEater, the China Wall…all rapids we get to play in nearly every day. After smashing through water walls and reaching the more tame section of this raft trip, we get to take off our helmets and relax, letting the river peacefully takes us through ancient canyon walls and green rolling hills. In a very calm section, just when the sun’s warmth turns to killer heat, we bank the boats and have “recess”:

20160707_114539 20160707_114545

That’s our makeshift Slip ‘N Slide. Please be aware, this is not just for the kids:

20160707_114624 20160707_114650

When the guests have fun, the guides have fun. When the guides have fun, the guests have fun. And that’s how I forget I’m even working at all.

And then there’s the times we’re truly not working but still having fun, like when we had our “Picture Day” to model our lavishing new work plaids.

DSC_0015 IMG_01881

…In case you were wondering, it’s the simple things that make raft guides happy, like Happy Meal juice boxes, cases of PBR, and an army of MoJoJoJo’s.

IMG_01901 20160624_191935 20160624_192109

Zoom in:
Version 3

There was also a time we celebrated Margaret’s birthday. Margaret is one of GAC’s most trustworthy and kind-hearted employees, helping with transportation to and from raft trips and activities at Bair Ranch. Here’s a pic of Ken and Margaret showing their appreciation of each other with cake to the face:


There was our Fourth of July celebration this past week, seen from a whole new perspective (literally). While most locals and visitors spent their evening watching fireworks from nearby Two Rivers Park, we scrambled up a ladder and waved our American pride all over the roof of the boathouse. This was right after the ‘MERICA!!!! guide team beat the Irish/Scottish guide team in probably too many beer-chugging games.

Photo by Brittney Morgan,
Photo by Brittney Morgan,
Photo by Brittney Morgan,
Photo by Brittney Morgan,
Photo by Brittney Morgan,

Even Ken got involved, smoothly trying to wave the flag he completely tangled up:


Give us a reason to get together, and there’s bound to be a rise of amusing (and maybe brainless) activity.

But honestly, what kind of fun would it be if there wasn’t?

*   *   *

As a side note, GAC has just begun its weekly Movie Night outside of the boathouse. Every Friday night until August 19th, Glenwood Adventure Company is hosting a community movie night complete with a projector screen and rafts and duckies for seats. Last Friday we showed Jurassic World and had a pretty good turnout. It was a beautiful evening, and with an ice cream shop across the street for children and a liquor store two doors down for adults, everyone was happy. This week we’ll be showing Star Wars: the Force Awakens, so bring your friends!




By Jenn Cleary