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TSS Earnslaw & BBQ Buffet Lunch
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Reviewed 24 February 2017

We did Shotover River and we were lucky (I think?!) enough to be able to raft just at the water limit for the river for the rafting to take place... there was lots of water in the river and it was hard core rafting. The guys know what they are doing, and just have to trust what they say, listen to their instructions and have an awesome fun time. It wasn't for the feinthearted though at this level, but man it was one hell of an adventure! I would definitely recommend it!

Date of experience: February 2017
Thank ihd83
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
QueenstownRafting, Front Office Manager at RealNZ, responded to this reviewResponded 27 February 2017

Hi Ian,

Thank you for your great review. Glad to hear you had a blast and enjoyed the high water experience. The Shotover is definitely not for the feint of heart at the high water levels but as you said it is a great adventure at those levels. Hope you can make it back sometime and raft again.

Cheers,
The QR Team

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Reviewed 24 February 2017

My husband and I have never done anything like this... we are 55 and 56 and did just fine.. there were 11 rafts with 8 people including a guide in each one.. ages ranging from school girls ( junior high) to 60 somethings. They did an excellent job of explaining ahead of time and coaching while we were in route.. about 1 hour on the water and they worked their tails off to give all of us a great experience. Our guide was Sam and he was super!

Date of experience: February 2017
Thank Tamjean61
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
QueenstownRafting, Front Office Manager at RealNZ, responded to this reviewResponded 28 February 2017

Thanks for taking the time to write us a nice review. We are stoked to hear you had such a wonderful time rafting with us. The Kawarau is great river for those who have never rafted or are looking for a little less crazy experience than the Shotover. Sam is a doll, and we are very lucky to have him as a guide. I will pass on your review to him. Hope to see you on the river again.

Kind Regards,
The Queenstown Rafting Team

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Reviewed 24 February 2017 via mobile

Great way to travel to Walter Peak Farm. The Boat is well looked after and its great you can see into the engine room and see how this steam boat is powered/works.

Date of experience: February 2017
Thank TristanM670
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 24 February 2017 via mobile

Beautiful venue for gardens, sheep shearing and border collie training runs. Lovely ferry ride over as well- recommended thoroughly for a good 1/2 day trip.

Date of experience: February 2017
Thank Ksantoro1
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 24 February 2017 via mobile

Be prepared if you are doing the shotover river that you will going on a 40 minute bus ride with trailer attached along a very scary one lane dirt road with huge ravines. All it says on the website is you will take an "unforgettable coach trip into Skippers Canyon" which for most people doesn't mean or specify anything. They need to be more clear about that. Once we get into our perspective rafts, we start our journey and it's for the most part it's a pretty chill river even though water levels were higher than usual. What we found out during the trip when two boats got stuck in a rapid was that a new rapid was formed last week. This held trip up for over an hour and unfortunately our boat did not get stuck on this new rapid, we completely flipped right into a new and pretty dangerous rapid. As a pretty experienced rafter I know the dangers, I know that things can happen out there. This was the first time I felt completely unsafe and my experience was terrifying especially with being held under for so long and water pressure was so hard that I was literally getting waterboarded. After going down two large rapids I found the rope for our boat and our guide was on top of our flipped over raft. I hung on for dear life and then was rescued by another boat. With no exaggeration, this was the first time I felt pretty close to death mostly because of not being able to breathe because fierceness of water pressure continuing to rush in my mouth. My girlfriend and I are ok other than some decent size bruises all over our bodies from banging around in rocks. My go pro also snapped off of my helmet while I was twirling around under water. Once we got back into our own boat our guide repeatedly tried to put the blame on all of us that we weren't doing the right thing. I'm sorry, but maybe everyone didn't experience the same scare as I did, but you don't blame it on us. This was painfully obvious that none of the guides did not know how to raft down this "new" rapid. They need to work out some kinks and work on their communication. I'm not someone who overreacts to situations, but as scary as that was the worst part was the nonchalant attitudes of the guides and the projected blame. Please just be more clear and present information with more transparency.

Date of experience: February 2017
1  Thank njhassinger
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
QueenstownRafting, Front Office Manager at RealNZ, responded to this reviewResponded 28 February 2017

Sorry to hear you found your rafting experience less than satisfactory. The road in can be quite scary, but we do address that in our briefings we announce to everyone right after check in. We go over that the road has incredible scenery, but it is quite narrow and steep so if anyone is afraid of heights to not sit in a window seat. Our drivers have extensive training before they are able to drive that road. As far as the rafting goes, we take safety very seriously and have strict protocols in place, but even with those there is still an aspect of unpredictability involved when dealing with outdoor adventure activities as there are always aspects out of our control. That rock slip had just happened and it was a new experience for the guides, and although they run that trip everyday and are very well trained; a new rapid can be challenging, and unfortunately there was a flip. We spoke with the guides and the trip was delayed to assess the new section a bit more thoroughly than usual, and the guide that flipped did say he had trouble getting the boat flipped back over. He said the difficulty was largely due to a lot of the customers hanging on to it even when he instructed them not to, so he was not able to flip the boat back over in time for everyone to get back in before taking a swim in a few rapids. These things do happen as that is the risk you take with rafting, our guides do try to avoid this and do go over safety briefings with the whole group and on their individual boats in great detail before going through these rafting sections, but there are a few things just out of our control at times. We hope this has not put you off rafting, and if you are ever back in Queenstown that you will come out and try another trip with us.

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