Course Description

In the past, potential guides have had to attend a series of courses, giving up many weekends and free time to become certified in First Aid, CPR, Swift Water Rescue, and to learn how to guide a raft. Now, WRI has partnered with Aerie Backcountry Medicine, Montana River Guides and Montana Tech of the University of Montana to offer this intensive seven day course as an all-in-one package.  Not only will students receive the necessary certifications, but the courses will be integrated, giving students interested in whitewater a one of a kind experience, designed specifically for the Professional Guide.

Topics Covered:

  • Hydrology
  • Self-rescue skills
  • Group organization
  • Outdoor Leadership skills
  • Wilderness First Aid skills
  • Throw-bagging
  • CPR
  • Paddle Boat Guiding
  • Oar Boat Guiding
  • Boat rigging
  • Unpinning Boats
  • Reflipping Boats

Included in the Course:

  • Swiftwater Rescue text by Cody Harris and Mike Johnston
  • Wilderness Medicine text by Aerie Backcountry Medicine
  • Access to WRI online rescue resources and materials
  • Certification I.D. Cards
  • Patch
  • Sticker


Because of the risk inherent in any whitewater or river activity, we want to make sure you are aware of these risks and acknowledge them prior to the class.  Simply put, we cannot guarantee your safety. If a river rescue or safety class is to be effective and give students whitewater experience and hands-on training, it is not going to be safe. In order for our instructors to provide realistic training with challenges that simulate actual rescue conditions, we recognize there is always the chance that someone is going to get injured. We may be walking along slippery rocky shorelines, swimming in cold whitewater, and working with ropes and rescue equipment in very realistic scenarios. All of this involves risk, and we will try our best to manage risk in a way that creates a balance between the risk students are exposed to and the levels of challenge presented during the training.

To receive a WRI certification from this class you will be expected to demonstrate the ability to perform some specific skills we cover in the course, such as defensive and aggressive swimming, throwbagging, live bait, z-drags, etc.  You may be asked to perform these skills in test stations or drills, or you may be asked to perform them in scenarios.

We encourage you to talk with our staff if you have any questions concerning safety.  We are proud of our safety record and know that our instructors do not achieve this alone, it takes the help of our students.

  • Course Length:56 hours (7 days)
  • Certification Received:
    • WRI: Technician - 3yrs
    • Wilderness First Aid - 2yrs
    • Heatsaver CPR - 2yrs
    • Paddle/Oar Boat Training
  • Cost:$ 795.00

Course Calendar & Registration Info

There are currently no available events