Rowing Certification

This intensive five-day course is for those individuals who aspire to become a fly-fishing raft or drift boat guide. Although many people do take our school if they have or are considering purchasing a Drift boat or raft with no intention of becoming a guide. We put an emphasis on safety and setting up your boat for you.

The course will provide you with the hours and training needed to be a state-certified float guide in Colorado. Per Colorado Parks and Wildlife regulations to earn your minimum qualifications you will spend a minimum of 50 hours in a boat, with a certified instructor. Students will learn all aspects of boating safety and oarsmanship. We put 2 students and an instructor per boat, so to maximize each student’s time on the sticks. Classroom and field training will begin each day at 7:00 a.m. and finish around 6:00 p.m. No prior rafting experience is needed and no special equipment is required. Instructors will have a cooler and class 3 PFDs.

Rivers floated in the course are the Colorado, Roaring Fork, and Eagle Rivers. Each river provides a unique opportunity to test your skills and to learn the many aspects of rowing for fishermen.

Minimum qualification river log

Colorado Certified Guide/Rowing School Instructors

Kevin Wildgen, who has been FFO’s senior Guide since 1998, administers the rowing school. Kevin has over 25,000 commercial rowing miles under his belt. Our rowing school will get you the row certification required to be a float guide on Colorado rivers. More importantly, it will teach you the skills required to row for fly fishermen casting and fishing out of a boat. Several veteran guides, including Kelley Bobye, Dan Houck, Kip Wolcott, Matt Fletcher, John Byron, Jay Chreighton, Scott McKenzie will assist Kevin Wildgen in the row schools.

2024 ROWING SCHOOL DATES: MAY 19-23, 2024

We are currently taking registration for 2024 Guide and Row schools. To register please call 970-845-8090

How Much Does a Rowing Certification Cost?

COST: $1200.00

Private Rowing Instruction

Fly Fishing Outfitters is pleased to offer private rowing instruction in 2021. This course is tailored to the individual who is looking to become a more competent oarsman. This class does NOT CERTIFY the student to row a commercial trip.

Cost: $300.00 per day

*Payment is required in advance to reserve a spot in either school. Each year the schools fill up fast, so booking a spot early is advised. The tuition fee is for the school only and does not include lodging or meals. We have arranged a special rate at the Comfort Inn in Avon for those students who need lodging. Evening fishing spots are close by to practice what you learn during the day.