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Registration Information

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Course Women’s Intermediate Whitewater Packraft Course / 3-day River journey
Course Dates 04/11/2022 - 06/11/2022
Closing Date 18/10/2022
Course Information Start Time & Venue: Friday 4th Nov. Meet at Elizabeth Town Café (ETC) on the Bass Hwy in Elizabeth Town at 9am.

See Google Maps: -41.464111601534945, 146.56187014141486

Please meet the group at 9am in the lower carpark as we will organise gear and the shuttle vehicles/arrangements there. The intention is to then drive to the take-out at Kelly Cage Road and drop off a number of vehicles (or at least one) before proceeding to the start of the river journey at the Union Road Bridge.

If any last-minute issues with meeting the group contact the course organiser, Jen MacGibbon (Oates) on 0418330076.

Finish Time & Venue: It is expected that the trip will fully conclude by 4pm (or earlier) on Sunday 6th November. It is approximately one hour’s drive from the finish near Mole Creek to the Launceston Airport.

Course Overview: this course focuses on river running, river reading skills, group & safety management plus basic Whitewater paddling techniques. The course is designed to complement the technical paddling courses that have been offered in the past and focuses on additional skills to keep others and yourself safe on river journeys. As a bonus the course takes place in a highly scenic gorge and a beautiful part of Tasmania.

The course will operate at two levels – for those that want to develop their own river running skills and gain confidence in organising their own multi-day packrafting adventures as well as those that want to develop their group river management and on-water leadership skills. It is ideal for those who have completed a beginner packraft course as well as some form of river rescue training (e.g. one day‘Level 1’ course) OR an intermediate packraft course for paddlers that are looking to learn to take more responsibility for others on the water or considering going for a Whitewater packraft guide qualification in the future.

The Program will include lessons on:


  • personalrn & group safety/rescue gear
  • repair items 
  • multi-day camping equipment considerations 
  • load distribution and attachment of gear on packrafts


  • on-river communication and group roles
  • safety management, scouting, setting safety and protecting others
  • a range of strategies for paddling as a team in different environments
  • leadership opportunities (for those who want this)


  • hydrology & understanding moving water
  • basic Whitewater paddling techniques 
  • learning to use river features to your advantage
  • using eddies and cross-current momentum to gain control in rapids
  • river running techniques such as dealing with stoppers


  • recognition & risk assessment of river hazards such as strainers, undercuts & sieves
  • re-cap of basic Whitewater swimming and wading techniques
  • rescue and recovering of gear, packrafts and swimmers
  • throw bagging techniques and practice
  • lining packafts around difficult rapids & portaging options
  • a range of river rescue scenarios

All participants need to be comfortable with being self-sufficient and organising themselves with gear and food for a 3-day trip.

Food/Water: Bring all food for the river journey (3 lunches, 2 breakfasts and 2 dinners plus snacks/energy food). It is participants’ choice as to whether they drink the river water straight or filter it or else choose to carry drinking water. There are a couple of good streams that usually provide non-farmland water along the way but bring the capacity to carry 3-4 litres of water if aiming to utilise these.

Waste: TP, hand sanitiser, poo tube, poo bags {dog poop bags work well}.

Accommodation:The first night is on good open grassland however the second night may well be on rock ledges within the gorge section. As such a compact freestanding tent or tarp and/or bivvy bag may be the best option.Tents that require lots of good peg placements are not ideal.

Clothing/Gear: Due to the steep sides of the Alum Cliffs Gorge the river does not see a lot of sun and consequently this section of river can be chilly –particularly outside of summer. Warm clothes for camp are definitely needed and participants should consider their river clothing carefully. Decent wetsuits or dry suits are recommended as you need to dress for potential swims. Decent footwear is also a must as we will be portaging a number of rapids. We also intend to run a number of river management scenarios and for some of these participants may need to get in the water to assist in rescues.

Equipment Required:

Participants need to attend with the following:

  • suitable packraft with inflation bag &/or pump
  • appropriate whitewater kayak/packraft paddle 
  • whitewater paddling helmet (Please do not bring climbing or bike helmets)
  • whitewater PFD that fits you well
  • wetsuit and cag/paddling jacket or drysuit
  • water shoes that you can comfortably walk around on rocks in (note that old runners/volleys with wetsuit socks may actually work better than lightweight wetsuit booties which are often uncomfortable to walk in, particularly on rough and slippery rocks)
  • personal repair kit for packraft (e.g. Aquaseal tube & tape)
  • personal medications, sunscreen & personal first aid items
  • free-standing tent or possibly a tarp &/or bivvy bag
  • warm sleeping bag & a decent/thick sleeping mat that can cope with being on rock!
  • stove and fuel
  • water filter or ability to carry 3-4 litres of water
  • rain jacket plus warm clothes for camp including beanie and neck-warmer

If you have them:

  • throw bag & river knife
  • sling (2m-4m) & 2 screw gate carabiners
  • any other safety gear you generally paddle with

Equipment Provided by Instructors:

  • group first aid kit
  • satellite 2-way communication device & PLB
  • maps
  • group packraft repair kit
  • spare paddle & improvised paddle options
  • group emergency safety shelter (bothy shelter)
  • several spare throw ropes will also be available

COVID & Refund Policy:

PLEASE DO NOT ATTEND if you have any cold or flu-like symptoms!

If you are suddenly unable to attend the course due to a situation around COVID or if the course has to be cancelled you will receive a full refund.


For information about Registration, Payments & Refunds or COVID policies please contact the Sandra Kent (Paddle Tasmania Education and Training Officer)

For information about the course itself please contact Jen MacGibbonrn(Oates) or Nors Corstorphan via:

Looking forward to paddling with you, Jen & Nors

National Training provider Paddle Tasmania
Phone 0497656710
Course Location Alum Cliffs section Mersey River (near Mole Creek) ,TAS
Website Visit Website
Course Cost $ 455.00
Non-member $364 members
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Please ensure you have been in contact with Paddle Tasmania prior to registering for this Course to ensure you have the appropriate skills and information to take part.
There will be a $20.00 fee to register your qualification with Paddle Australia for 3 years. You will only be invoiced for your PA registration once all requirements for the qualification have been completed and submitted to Paddle Australia.