Your guide team and local hosts
Our partner for this packrafting trip is Coast to Coast Adventures. They run a fantastic operation in Costa Rica. With Coast to Coast’s knowledge and resources on the ground in Costa Rica combined with the Boreal River Adventures experience running whitewater river expeditions around the world—we make a great team ☺
Coast to Coast has been organizing adventure travel trips in the country for over 20 years. They own a base camp and equipment centre on the flanks of the Turrialba Volcano (where you’ll be staying on night 2). As well, they run a truly magical eco-camp, El Nido del Tigre on the banks of the river surrounded by rainforest. We’ll paddle into El Nido on day-5 for a two-night stay.
You’ll see the amazing care that the team of Coast to Coast staff put into making the camps incredible, and your trip run smoothly. They are super welcoming, with a team of over 20 full time guides, operations staff, drivers, camp caretakers, and equipment managers.
Seasoned, knowledgeable guides
Starting on day 2, your guide team is made up of 4 professional river guides including: 2 Boreal River trip leaders, an indigenous (Cabecar) guide, and a video/safety kayaker. (Our expert naturalist guide joins us on days 5 and 6).
Your guides are seasoned, knowledgeable, and welcoming. Boreal River director, Danny Peled will be one of the guides on this trip. In Danny’s words:
“I started leading river trips in Costa Rica in 2002. In my twenties, I spent 5 winters there as a full time guide. I’ve been going back every year to teach rescue and medical courses. The Pacuare River and specifically the Coast to Coast camp is one of my favorite places in the world!
One of the exciting things about packrafting is that it allows people who aren’t necessarily experienced whitewater kayakers to do what experienced paddlers find so awesome: self-supported expeditions.
Back when I wintered in Costa Rica, on days off a group of us would go on these trips that were so cool. We’d pack lightweight, drag our kayaks through jungle trails in the Talamanca mountains to reach rivers we’d never paddled before. It is such an awesome feeling rounding a corner on a new river without knowing what’s ahead. Stopping for the night on a beach and just hanging out in the wilderness.
I’m so excited to show people this side of Costa Rica. The upper sections of the Pacuare are rarely paddled and so beautiful and fun! And the Lower Pacuare is a classic for a reason: it is like the Disney Land of rivers with awesome rapids, waterfalls coming in from everywhere, giant blue butterflies fluttering around, sloths, toucans…
I most look forward to paddling, sipping coffee in the morning while looking out at those layers and layers of misty, steep hillsides and green vegetation, listening to the crazy jungle sounds, and helping people who’ve never done this sort of thing before have an awesome vacation.
And oh yah, I can’t wait to learn more about the rainforest from an ecologist who’ll join us on the Lower Pacuare! It is sooo cool to walk through the rainforest with someone who can show you stuff you wouldn’t even notice and explain it in a super engaging way.
I’m also really stoked to hang out with Ariel, a local Cabecar guide who literally grew up on the banks of the Pacuare. He learned how to kayak by practicing on a log until one day a boat floated down to him! A gift from the river!! He’s an awesome kayaker now. He’ll be leading us on the whole expedition. We’ll get to ask him about the area and also visit with his family on our way down the river. (For them to get to a road, they need to walk for 3 hours through the jungle.)
This trip will be so fun. It will also give everybody a true sense place—an opportunity to connect with this part of Costa Rica on a deep level. Woot!”