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Guide Bios

Our New Mexico rafting guides are exceptional whitewater professionals with thousands of hours in the field and years of experience guiding not just in NM but all over the United States and in some cases all around the world. The guides are the people who make any river rafting trip stand out above the others and our guides have gone through rigorous training on sections of river we run. In addition all of our guides are swiftwater rescue trained and have emergency medical training.

Jake Walker

Jake is one of the most experienced river guides in New Mexico and we are lucky enough to have him on the NMRA Team.  With a superior level of professionalism, expertise and humor, both guests and guides have been enjoying his company for many years.  In addition to making sure his guests have the trip of a lifetime day after day, Jake leads our Guide Training Program and is a professional Stand Up Paddleboarder.  When off the river, you can always find Jake accompanied by his faithful companion and all around amazing dog, Rokit, dreaming up new adventures and living life to the fullest!

    Luke Kriken

    Luke Kriken has been with our company since 2014. Luke grew up in Northern California bordering the redwoods on the coast and the sprawling oak tree groves of the central valley. Growing up on the largest natural lake in California, Luke always had an affinity towards water and spent countless days exploring the lake in canoes and sailboats. After looking for a fun adventurous job in the outdoors in between school terms Luke found his way out to New Mexico where he has become enchanted by the beautiful high deserts of the area.  

      Cari Fox

      A passionate mother, wife, blue-haired grandma, photographer, and seeker of adventure has found her perfect home here with the New Mexico River Adventures family. She came to visit Northern New Mexico 6 years ago, and decided to stay. 6 years on vacation and counting!

        Savannah Hall

        Savannah Hall was born in Dallas but moved to New Mexico in 2009 where she immediately became enchanted with the beauty of the high desert. She decided to become a guide because the raft guide gene runs in her blood, as many of her family members are also guides. Thinking it would be a nice summer job she did not realize she would ever become so enamored by the river. In her spare time, she can be found making art or traveling but she mostly enjoys going back to the river after work!

          Andy Armendariz

          From Austin Texas, he thanks his parents for always supporting his interest and introducing him to the outdoors at a young age. Through childhood hunting, fishing, and camping, his love and respect for nature came with ease. He is an avid stand up paddle boarder and Is currently enrolled at Texas State University San Marcos. He helps manage the Adventure Trip Program for the Outdoor Recreation Center where he would find his passion for leading outdoor trips and spreading the happiness that mother nature provides. When he's off the river you can try to find him getting lost in the backcountry or sharing smiles.

            Dorothy Fowler

            A visit to the breathtaking Taos, New Mexico in February 2016 led me to move out west from Carrollton, Georgia after graduating from the University of West Georgia, with a degree in Biology and a minor in Psychology. Although last year at NMRA was my first experience with rafting, I quickly became entranced with not only the river but the NMRA family as well. After spending the winters working at the beautiful Taos Ski Valley, I am always excited for the adventures Spring brings with my river family.

              Hannah Edwards

              It's Hannah from Louisiana Y'all! Fresh out of college in 2017 she decided to travel to New Mexico for an adventurous summer before heading back home to find a 'real job'.  After recognizing that a career in guiding could be a dream-come-true that wouldn't come easy, she fell in love with the area, the culture, and the challenges of the job.  As soon as her first summer ended she packed up her things and made Taos her new home. In her off time she can be found meandering and enjoying her surroundings.

                Zach Smith

                Zach is a native New Mexican from Las Cruces.  After finding his way North to Santa Fe, he embarked on a career on the rivers and mountains of Northern New Mexico.   He is a 6 year river guide and one of our most trusted trip leaders on both the Rio Grande and Rio Chama.  His love for the river is infectious with our guests who often request Zach and whether it's through whitewater or on the ski hill, they always have a great time with him.

                  James Holmes

                  Howdy, the name is James but everyone around here calls me Coach! I just completed my Bachelors degree at Texas State and am planning on a masters degree soon. After joining the NMRA team 2 years ago, guiding folks downstream has become a way of life for me.  I have been passionate about rivers from a young age and truly feel at home on the water. Freestyle kayaking is currently my favorite way to get down river, but now I have my eyes set on steep, Class V creeking!

                    River Rafting New Mexico- Wendy Meyer

                    Wendy Meyer

                    Wendy's passion for rivers began in early childhood growing up canoeing and fishing the many rivers running through the Ozark Mountains. While spending every possible free moment honing her canoe skills on local rivers, Wendy earned her Master's Degree at the University of Missouri. After several years as a social worker in Missouri, Wendy moved to Colorado to work with homeless youth and began exploring the rivers and mountains of the Southwest and discovered a love for a new type of boat, the river raft. Outside of being a New Mexico rafting guide, Wendy can usually be found with a couple friends and her dog doing what she's always done with her free time, boating and fishing her way down a river. In 2013, Wendy will compete in a 340 mile canoe race in Missouri, one of the most challenging in the world!

                      Emily Armijo

                      A native New Mexican, Emily grew up playing in the Sandia Mountains where she began her outdoor recreation career as a ski and snowboard instructor. She started ski patrolling in 2015 at Sandia Peak where her passion for the outdoors and emergency medicine grew. Emily is currently working towards her EMS-Paramedic and wilderness medicine degrees. She started guiding on Rio Grande and quickly grew to love whitewater and the people of the river. When she's not on the river she can be found mountain biking, snowboarding in the Sangre De Cristo mountains, or working as a ski patroller at Taos Ski Valley.

                        Devin Beck

                        Devin Beck was raised in Phoenix, Arizona where he grew up with a true love for the outdoors and the Desert. In 2012 he became a New Mexico rafting guide for New Mexico River Adventures and immediately fell in love with the rivers of Northern New Mexico. Since then he has moved to the Taos are permanently to pursue his rafting career and a career in the education system during the rest of the year.

                          Kim Chatfield

                          Kim was born in Alaska and moved to the Rio Grande Valley at age 5. His family has been in New Mexico for 4 generations.  He initially got into rafting while looking for the Forest Fenn treasure and quickly found the water to be its own reward.  Kim loves all water craft and is a Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) instructor certified by the American Canoe Association.  He has been boating on the Rio Grande for over 7 years and enjoys sharing his knowledge of local flora, fauna, geology and culture with new and old friends on the river.

                            Jenne McIntosh

                            Jenne was raised in the mountains of Northern New Mexico. She learned to ski as a toddler, and developed a love for the outdoors early in life. After High School, Jenne worked backstage at rock shows and concerts as a stagehand/spotlight operator/rigger for 10 years. Her greatest accomplishment is being the proud mom of 3 amazing kiddos, who also love exploring and being outside and doing cool stuff. Although, she has been a performing singer/songwriter/musician for 20 years and you can often hear her playing at the Blue Heron Brewery and Vivac Winery after your trip. Jenne have been a ski instructor for 3 years, has mastered the art of Nunchucks and is a passionate rafting photographer and proud NMRA team member for three years.

                              Wendy Gontram

                              Wendy started her rafting career on the Rio Grande and Rio Chama and has been in love with rivers ever since. She has left New Mexico to search out other rivers in the U.S and beyond but could never find anything that compares to the rivers and community of Northern New Mexico. Whether it's a calm float through the Bosque or an exciting ride through the world-class whitewater of the Taos Box, she loves to share her passion for the river with everyone in her boat. When not on the river, Wendy enjoys walking her dogs on area trails and kayaking her local rivers.

                                Matthew Gontram

                                Matt started rafting and kayaking at the age of 18 and knew right away that this was the life for him. He ran his first commercial raft trip on the Rio Grande and Rio Chama in 1992 and has been in love with the rivers of New Mexico since. Before recently returning to the New Mexico he has dedicated his time to exploring the greatest river trips in the U.S. and around the world. His hobbies away from the river include playing with his dogs, seeing bluegrass legends and planning the next big adventure.