Summer Gap Program
The Western Whitewater Gap Program focuses on outdoor adventure, and leadership training while giving you valuable whitewater training in the American West. In addition, you will learn valuable leadership and communication skills by working with inspiring leaders in the outdoor industry.
Length: 34 days
Season: Summer, Fall
Summer: approximately June 12 to July 16 | Fall: approximately September 18 to October 23
Outdoor Adventure and Training
Earn industry-recognized certifications and learn necessary skills to plan your own epic adventures or work in the whitewater industry.
With its rugged mountains, varied landscapes and wild scenic rivers, the American West is the perfect place to find adventure for participants of all abilities. Our team of highly skilled instructors and local partners guide participants through rafting, and whitewater kayaking experiences while participants earn valuable certifications and learn necessary skills to plan their own epic adventures or work in the whitewater industry. In addition to technical experience, students will learn how to manage risk, group dynamics, medical emergencies and how to facilitate transformative experiences in a variety of backcountry and front-country environments.
Students have the opportunity to earn Swift Water Rescue Technician certification.
The program will be split between front-country and backcountry environments. While in the front-country, students will have the opportunity to stay in cozy yurts at our Idaho Campus, as well as at front country camp-sites next to hot springs and pristine rivers. In the backcountry, our students camp along sandy beaches, in beautiful forests and alpine meadows, and at historic ranches for a complete wilderness experience.
A gap program with Alzar Gap is packed with memorable experiences. Here is a basic overview of what your adventure might look like.
Please note that although our itineraries are powerful and well-thought-out, they are subject to change.
We begin our summer semester based out of our Idaho Campus. We will begin with afternoon paddles down a local stretch of the Payette River and evening kayak surfing sessions at our local whitewater play park. During the day, you will take a Swift Water Rescue program from experienced instructors, in order to prepare you for fun days on the river. This three-day program meets the needs of professional river guides as well as recreational river runners seeking techniques for managing water hazards and emergencies.
Students will take their newly learned swift water rescue and paddling skills out on a multi-day trip down the longest free flowing river in North America, the Salmon River. This week-long river trip (in partnership with Confluences River Expeditions) packs in quality whitewater and stunning views, while students learn how to lead multi-day river trips from our experienced instructors. Students can choose from a variety of crafts that both fit their skill level and whitewater progression. Each night we will camp on riverside beaches and cook delicious food around the fire.
We return to the Payette River basin in Western Idaho to kayak on the North, South, Middle and Main forks of the Payette River. Students work their way through sections of rivers that become progressively more difficult as new skills are learned and mastered. Our instructors can easily tailor this component to meet the needs of each student.
We end the Summer Semester with a multi-day day trip on a new section of the Salmon River, the Lower Salmon. The Lower Salmon is known for its warm water, large sandy beaches, and friendly, pool drop rapids. Students are able to showcase the skills they have learned over the past month by taking a leadership role in the planning and execution of this culminating expedition.