About Chinook Rafting

  • Chinook Rafting is the family rafting company!
  • Kids raft for free on their birthday.
  • We have MILD and WILD rivers for every level of adventure seeker, even those that aren’t sure!
  • No hidden extra costs once you book or arrive, all of your personal and safety equipment and experienced guide are included in the price.
  • We are 35 years old, we know our rivers and know how to have fun.
  • We offer exceptional levels of guest interaction and service, and provide adventure, entertainment, interpretation, team building and education.
  • We use top quality modern equipment and have industry-leading risk management strategies and safety standards in place.
  • We want you to experience a great day, a highlight of your trip to the Canadian Rockies, and in some cases, a day of a lifetime.
  • We know you will come back for another visit after rafting with us – just check out our TripAdvisor reviews!
About Our Guides


  • Guides are essential to the enjoyment of your trip, so we choose our team carefully. Many have been guiding internationally for over 10 years now.
  • We are highly trained professionals committed to showing you a great time on the water.
  • Every guide possesses the Professional Rivers Outfitters Association of Alberta (PROAOA) rafting license, along with First Aid, CPR & River Rescue qualifications as minimum standards.
  • We will share our knowledge, local stories, enthusiasm, skills and passion for rafting with you and leave the most lasting memories for you to tell your friends and family.
Richard the Raft Guide Senior Trip Leader at Chinook Rafting in the Canadian Rockies
Raft Guide (Operations Manager)

Richard van der Ploeg - Netherlands

During his time studying mechanical engineering, Richard took every opportunity to sneak off and play in the water. Summers were spent guiding in beautiful Slovenia with rafting on the Soca river and also heaps of canyoning and caving. Expeditions, work and randomness brought him to Canada, La Reunion, Italy, Sri Lanka, Azores, Tropical Belgium, New Zealand, Honduras and other gems. With a total of 15 years experience in outdoor tourism, he’s now a full-time guide. When he’s not around the flowing waters outside, it is highly likely you can find him making laps in the swimming pool, discussing which Taylor Swift song is best (Wildest Dreams!), building bamboo paddles or daydreaming about ice cream, pizza or cookies, in no particular order. His all-time favourite quote: “Njom njom njom njom” – Cookie Monster.

Raft Guide (Senior Trip Leader)

Tim Donnan - Australia

I’m known around the rafting scene for my long hair, poor sentence structures and loud Australian energy on the river. Rafting has been my bread winner (aka other adventure funds) for 8 seasons across New Zealand, Canada, India and Australia. You’ll be happy to know I’ve been couch training for over a month during the covid lockdown. This is my third season back at Chinook, and I can’t wait to have you aboard.

Raft Guide (Senior Trip Leader)

Chris Burnham - UK/Canada

Originally from the UK, Chris is at home on rivers worldwide having kayaked and rafted for over 20 years in places like the UK, France, Italy, Norway, Argentina, USA, Canada, Chile, New Zealand, Nepal, India & Zambia. He is a rafting examiner for the BC and AB River Outfitters Association, a certified kayaking instructor, a Swiftwater & Ice Rescue Technical Instructor for Rescue 3 International, and is an Emergency Medical and Advanced Wilderness First Responder.

Chris also has a strong background in rope rescue and has worked for the Industrial Rope Access Trade Association. Chris brings a wealth of experience, skill and charisma to our team. Asked how his rafting career began, “I suppose it all started when I was 10 years old. My local Scout Group had just bought six new kayaks, so I started testing them out on a nearby river. After a year of weekly kayaking lessons my dad bought me my first kayak, and before I knew it I was becoming hooked. My desire to combine both my passion for kayaking with my love for travelling eventually led me to train as a Whitewater Raft Guide.”

Vikram the Raft Guide Trip Leader at Chinook Rafting in the Canadian Rockies
Raft Guide (Trip Leader)

Vikram Hirani - India

I am Vikram Hirani from India. I live in the lap of the Indian Himalayas in the holy town of Rishikesh.  I have been raft guiding and safety kayaking on many different rivers off and on for the last 8 years. I feel very lucky to live in the Himalayas and I was trained on the Himalayan Rivers also. My favourite river is my home river called Ganga. When I am not rafting I go hiking, kayaking &  cycling. I am practicing yoga for the last 6 years and I can now teach students up to an intermediate level. I am very excited to be the part of the Chinook Rafting team this summer.

Raft Guide & Riverbase Manager

Maven Boddy - Canada

Well I’ve been training to be part of a company as wonderful and esteemed as Chinook for years. I got infected with a love of paddling outside when I was a very small child which has only spiraled into a passion for all outdoor activities since. My dreadlocks may be deceiving, but I study economics at the University of Alberta meaning that I am either the coolest economics student or most nerdy whitewater rafting guide.

James McKinlay
Raft Guide (Senior Trip Leader)

James McKinlay - Australia

From Australia, I started working in the outdoors in 2013 as a bushwalking, rock climbing, & rafting guide! Leading 10 day expeditions all around Australia, I discovered that my passion for the wild rivers surpassed my other hobbies and I have since raft guided on the Snowy, Murrumbidgee and Barron Rivers. If I’m not out paddling I’ll be out surfing, climbing, or doing pretty much anything to stay outside.

Off-River Manager

Heather Chrystie - UK/Canada

Heather is an import to Canada, hailing originally from England.  She fell in love with all that Canada’s vastness has to offer at the age of 18, and has since spent years living and working in the Canadian Rockies.

In between being off-river manager for Chinook Rafting, Heather loves to get out in these beautiful mountains both on her own and with guests as part of her work as a qualified hiking and wildlife guide.

A keen ski-tourer and advocate of cool weather, Heather spends some of the off-season guiding polar bear and northern lights trips in Northern Canada.  Her passion is showcasing the natural world, making nature’s beauty available to everyone who visits it.

Raft Guide (Trip Leader)

Théo Martinez - France

Originally from the French Alps, where I was always hanging out in the outdoors. So much actually, that I continued to get certificates to work outside in my two passions, the mountains and the river. I’ve been working in the kayak and rafting business more than 7 years now and I’ve paddled almost every river in France. I thought it was time to go and discover the ones in Canada!

Raft Guide

Luka Hodder

My names Luka I’m from south-east New South Wales in Australia. I’m an outdoor guide who loves paddling white water in a raft, canoe or kayak. Bring on the summer.

Raft Guide

Sarah Royce - Canada

Hello, my name is Sarah, and I’m super excited to be on the river soon for my second season with Chinook! I’ve grown up paddling in Ontario, and I’ve done whitewater trips on the Madawaska, Spanish, French and Dumoine River. I’ve been working as a Lifeguard for ten years during the summers, most recently as a member of the Port Stanley Beach Patrol. I’ve been living in the Bow Valley for the past four years now, and I am stoked to get out on the water again this summer. This past winter, I worked on Ski Patrol at Sunshine Village Ski Resort. When I’m not at work, I enjoy climbing, hiking, skiing, and biking.

Raft Guide

Sam Beaver - Australia

G’day folks, my name is Sam Beaver. This will be my second summer guiding for Chinook, and I’ve got all my fingers and toes crossed that we’ll be able to get out on the river with you soon once all this craziness settles down a bit. I grew up in Australia and have been Outdoor guiding for four years. If you happen to run into me in the mountains, on the rock, floating down a river or just sitting on a nice patch of grass in the sun, I’m likely to have a smile on my face. I’m looking forward to getting out into the beauty of the Rockies again with you all!

Duncan the Raft Guide at Chinook Rafting in the Canadian Rockies
Raft Guide (Trip Leader)

Duncan Brown - Canada

Hello fine people! When I’m not paddling rivers in a raft or by canoe, you might catch a glimpse of me – long flowing cape streaming in the wind – zooming around on my lime green unicycle. If you blink and miss me whilst unicycling, I may stop for a while to enjoy an ice cream. My official classification should be part monkey because I make a hobby out of climbing trees. When the rivers freeze over, I do some laps on the ski slopes any chance I get. Did you know: Alberta is not just mountains? It’s also flat in some places, and that’s where I call home.


White water rafting brings the heartrate up and smiles all around. The Kananaskis River delivers so much fun and excitement! We’ve been working with Chinookrafting to bring family friendly (and Covid friendly) trips this season. This river slices right between Calgary and Banff, making it an easy day trip for those wishing to have a different type of thrill. 
In the late 1800’s, Logs used to bounce down this river as the Kananaskis was used to bring wood from the mountain slopes to the Bow River to help supply Calgary. 
Kananaskis is the best name isn’t it?! Don’t forget to ask your guide where it comes from?
Вчера ночью получили фотографии с нашего экстрима. Вот такие мы смелые ребята за 5 минут до рафтинга. Я подчёркиваю ДО РАФТИНГА!!!🙈
И раз уж мы все вместе, это хороший повод познакомить с каждым:
Хозяин! Весь семейный финансовый учёт держится исключительно на нём, не смотря на то, что Худо бедно учился в школе. Харизматичный и очень Холёный мужчина, умеет Хватать удачу за Хвост😉
Хорошо сложён, точно знает чего от жизни Хочет, защитник всех малоХольных: муХи не обидит (в прямом смысле поймает и выпустит её за дверь), знает как паХнет пороХ в пороХовницах💥
Совсем ешё малюсенький Хлопчик, но сладкий и с очень Хорошим аппетитом. Немножко "Хулиган", согласно возрасту, чего мы все ему прощаем за доброе Храброе сердце и Характер с душой❤
Хорошенькая, Хрупкая особа. Живёт по принципу "Хочу и Хрен знает как желаемое сделать". Прекрасно научилась, когда надо, Хлопать ресницами и взлетать. Не дружит с Химией со школьных лет. Холодна к мясу и саХару.
Ну, и последнее, что нас объединяет: 
Мы все, наХоХлившись от *Холода*🤪 в Канаде Вам дружно шлём Хорошие приветы!
Эстафету приняли от ivolgaalisa и отработали "Х" по полной всей семьёй 🙌
Ну, Хто тут из нас получился самый Хот?🔥
Хотите поучаствовать во флешмобе, ставьте ссылку на меня и пишите "Хочу букву"!
А Вы как бы охарактеризовали себя на букву "Х"??? Уверена, сейчас все будут ХОРОШИМИ!!👌😂❤
Aaaaaaaaannnnnddd...... relax... take your zen rafting

#zenmastertheo #innertreasurechestofstories 
#chinookrafting #chinook # #AreYouReady #RaftersAreAwesome #StrongerTogether #oneloveoneriver #raftinggram #RiverFamily #WeAreIRF
📷 Chinook Rafting
I couldn’t thinking of a better way to spend my birthday. We had such a great time with chinookrafting yesterday, a perfect social distancing activity during this different time.
-Kananaskis River Rafting-
For me, the River Rafting was the best experience of the whole Banff trip, because I don't know how to swim, and I vouched to sit right in the front, when they asked. It was a truely awesome feeling, being right in the face of the wild and cold water!
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