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Paddling Through The Pandemic

Paddling Through The Pandemic


Staying Safe In A COVID World

The NMRA family is closely monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic. As a member of The New Mexico River Outfitters Association there is a long-standing commitment to the health and safety of our guests and employees. We face these uncertain times together and if this finds you while trying to plan a return trip or are seeking updates for a future reservation, we are
committed to following the advice and guidance of local and state health authorities. We are committed to staying current with all protocols and requirements set for our community. We expect these to be consistently evolving and we will keep you updated.

It’s understood within the outdoor tourism industry that nature and wilderness experiences are important for mental health. At this time, we plan to run our trips as scheduled. With concerns for our physical health greater than ever, NMRA will be adhering to the following guidelines and protocols.

Participant requirements: We’ve switched to online reservations, and all guests must complete the online waiver received with the booking confirmation email. All members within your reservation must complete the waiver and affiliated COVID-19 Questionnaire.

NMRA is following the listed guidelines for the cleaning and sanitization of river equipment and vehicles after every trip.

  • Vehicle: All rafting equipment is to be removed prior to cleaning. All touchpoints
    (steering wheel, door handles, shift lever, buttons, wiper and turn signal stalks,
    passenger and driver armrests, grab handles, and seat adjusters) are to be cleaned with
    soapy water and CBC-approved disinfectant.
  • River Equipment: PFDs are to be cleaned with soap and water and hung to dry, after
    having a 24-48 hour exposure to air. All participant gear (paddles, helmets, wetsuits and
    splash gear) will be cleaned with soap and water or an acceptable cleaning solution.
    NMRA will expect staff and guests to act in accordance with the following behavioral
  • Guest:
    • Before arrival, you have completed a COVID-19 Questionnaire. The
      questionnaire is built into the participation wavier sent with the confirmation
    • Wear appropriate face coverings such as a mask, buff or bandana
    • Frequent hand-washing. Hand wash and/or sanitizing station is available at
      assembly, embarkation/debarkation from boast or vehicle, and at all stopping
  • Guide:
    • Minimize direct participant contact during activity. No shaking hands.
    • Frequent hand washing/sanitizing
    • Wear a face covering
    • The social distancing of participants is practiced to the greatest extent possible
    • Encourage and remind participants of hand washing/sanitizing.

As an outfitter, NMRA has adopted the following responsibilities:

  • Maintain six feet of “social distancing” at assembly and embarkation points. Families
    and groups traveling together will be distanced from other families and groups, during
    the check-in process as well as put-in and takeout.
  • Maintain (ie. gently and respectfully enforce as necessary) six feet of “social distancing”
    at assembly and embarkation points, including put-ins and takeouts. Families and
    groups traveling together should be distanced from other families and groups, during
    the check-in process, including put-ins and takeout.
  • Provide convenient access to hand washing and/or sanitizer use. All employees will be
    instructed to wash their hands for at least 20 seconds or use sanitizer when a sink is not
    available, after any of the following activities: using the restroom, sneezing, touching
    the face, cleaning, smoking, eating, drinking, accepting items from a guest (ID, cash,
    credit card, etc.), When possible, employees shall wear gloves for added protection and
  • Maintain a supply of masks, gloves and sanitizer and provide to guides upon request.
  • Advise employees not to report for work if they have any of the symptoms of COVID-19:
    fever, cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, chills, muscle pain and new loss
    of taste or smell.
  • Adjust and restrict group sizes will be to reflect state and federal guidelines.
  • As mitigation guidelines change group loading will be adjusted to protect our tours.
    Guests should be asked to consent before being assigned to mix with other groups in a
    single boat.
  • Any guest that fails to pass the self-screening questionnaire will be asked not to
    participate in the river activity. Appropriate refunds issued.
  • To partially achieve the isolating effects of physical distancing, all trip participants will
    wear masks, buffs or other face and nose coverings, whenever it is safe and practical to
    do so. Such masking will be regulated (by suggestion or reminder) by company
    personnel whenever the party is assembling before the trip, riding in a company vehicle
    and at mealtimes.
  • On the river, where face-covering may represent an increased risk, the need for physical
    distancing will be reduced by assigning participants to boats with members of their
    family and others of their party.
  • Employees will receive training in how to properly inform guests of COVID-19 protocols
    and how to maintain said protocols.
  • Employees will receive thorough training on disinfecting protocols of all rafting
    equipment, vehicles, and shared office space.
  • Masks, along with appropriate training for use and disposal, shall be made available to
    any employee upon request.
  • Regular diagnostic testing of employees will become standard practice when available.

The following transportation guidelines will be followed:

  • Vehicles will be limited to 50% capacity and seating will be configured to maintain
    maximum physical distancing.
  • Outside windows will be lowered to increase ventilation
  • All Passengers (participant, guide, driver) will wear mask or buff during entire ride.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces between trips.
  • A barrier will separate driver and guests.