We hope you are eagerly anticipating your upcoming float trip. Through the years, we have learned that trip participants can often gauge the enjoyment of a trip based on how well prepared you are should the unexpected or the expected occur. Use this information to help prepare yourself for an enjoyable day of activity on the water.

    Tips For A Good Trip                           Equipment Checklist 
      Being Prepared & Responsible         Canoe Camping Gear List
      Trip Preparation                                 Types of Canoes
      While on the River                             Types of Paddles


"Floating the Neches River"


             "TIPS FOR A GOOD TRIP"


I. Being Prepared and Responsible:
   
    1. Be a competent swimmer with the ability to
        handle yourself underwater and in moving
        water.

2. Dress for the water temperature and be prepared to get wet. Wear
    layers of clothing which can be added or taken off during the day.
    Cold weather and/or cold water can result in hypothermia. Bring
    additional dry clothes to change into if paddling during cooler
    weather. Clothes should be packed in a waterproof container or a
    double trashbag.

3. Use an eyeglass strap for your eyeglasses or sunglasses.


4. Wear shoes! Old gym shoes or shoes with tops
    and sides offer the most protection. Avoid
    sandals.

5. Bring drinking water in non-breakable
    containers. Alcohol should not be taken on the
    canoe trip.


6. Use a sun hat on bright warm days. Wearing a wool stocking hat helps
    slow heat loss from you body on cool, wet days. Take along a windbreaker
    or rain gear.

7. Take necessary allergy or other medications with you on the river. In case
    of mishap, it could be several hours before help arrives in inaccessible
    locations.

8. Paddling is a physical exercise. Consult your physician
    prior to undertaking any program of physical exercise.

9. Get plenty of rest prior to your outing. Wear
    comfortable clothing that will keep you warm if you
    get wet. Eat a good meal before leaving on your trip.
    Drink plenty of fresh water while on the river to
    prevent dehydration.


10. Take food and snacks along in a waterproof container which can be
      fastened to the boat. Remember, all items not fastened in the boat are at
      risk of getting lost and/or wet. No styrofoam coolers or glass containers
      please.

11. Use sun screen even on cloudy days.

12. Wear only waterproof watches.

13. Optional items to bring include: fishing gear, a bailer or sponge to remove
      excess water from the boat, insect repellent, knee pads (for kneeling in
      boat), first aid kit, whistle or other signaling device for use in
      emergencies.

II. Trip Preparation:

1. Be certain to wear a properly fitted Personal Flotation Device (PFD) at all
    times when on and around the water. These will be distributed at the
    Livery.

    Check your PFD for proper, snug fit prior to leaving the livery. Do not
    accept a device if it is torn or if buckles or fasteners are not functioning
    properly.


2. Review the river map. Know where your
    float trip will take you, where to get out, and
    emergency routes in case of mishap. Make
    sure you understand how to identify and avoid
    any hazards marked on the map.

3. Choose a paddle of proper size.

4. Take a litter bag with you and use it.

5. Be sure your boat is in good repair before

   starting a trip. Do not overload or improperly load the boat. This can lead to
   unexpected capsize. Steady the boat for your partner while loading and
   unloading.

III. While On The River:

1. It is recommended that you leave your PFD on at all times, even when
    swimming.

2. Keep your craft under control. Control must be good
    enough at all times to stop or reach shore. Know your
    boating ability. Do not enter an area of fast current
    unless you feel sure you can safely paddle through.

3. Respect anglers. Paddle to the shore opposite of their
    lines and pass by quietly.


4. When paddling in a group, assign a boat to lead and a sweep boat to paddle
    in the rear. Both the lead and sweep positions should be held by
    experienced paddlers with knowledge of the river being traveled. Never
    get ahead of the assigned lead or behind the assigned sweep boat.

5. Do not paddle in flood conditions. During
    periods of heavy rain, the river levels can rise
    quickly. Recognize when the water level and
    current speed exceed your abilities.

6. Be sure to keep an appropriate distance between canoes. Distance will
    vary depending on water conditions. A good rule of thumb is to keep the
    boat behind you within view. If they lag behind, pull over and wait.

7. Keep a lookout for river hazards and avoid them. Walk around any hazard
    about which you have doubts.

8. Never dive headfirst into the water.


9. Respect private property. Please do not trespass.

10. It is recommended that you do not paddle alone.
      Bring your friends!



"On Village Creek"

PLEASE REMEMBER: You are in control of your rented boat while on the
water. The river is a natural environment with downed trees, rocks, and
fluctuating levels, depth and current speeds. Man-made obstructions such as
bridge piers and dams should be avoided. Be ready for possible temperature
and weather changes. -
American Canoe Association

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921 South Main Street
Lumberton, Texas 77657
(409) 751-0911


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