Click on the Number's to the left to find out more about the trip!
The Adventure of RiverWatch
There is a lot to do during a RiverWatch day! Not only do students learn rafting and then paddle as much as 10 km, there is science to do along the way. RiverWatch programs are built around data comparisons between two separate shoreline test sites well separated by a lunch stop. Any other activities such as a forest transect, interpretive activities or wastewater treatment tours are dependent on available time.
The time template below outlines the planning for a full 6.5 hour RiverWatch day as calculated from bus arrival to bus departure. The “Three Stop Challenge” is to use available time for two separate and distinct stops fully involving all students at both test sites either side of a lunch stop.
- If available time is less than 6.5 hours but a minimum of 5.5 hours, it is the forest transect, creek walk, interpretive activities or wastewater tour that may have to be shortened or dropped in order to fully deliver environmental monitoring at two distinct shoreline sites.
- Both RiverWatch and the school will do everything they can to ensure time efficiencies related to arrival, travel, test sites, lunch and departure.
- Schools are encouraged to avoid booking on early dismissal days and even to consider departure before normal class times and/or arrival back to school after normal dismissal times.
- Modified programs – without three distinct and separate stops – are hopefully the exception rather than rule. Modified programs will be described on RiverWatch daily trip reports for end-of-season review. Weather, flow rates or wind may also influence available time and decisions on program content.
- Schools that do not have a minimum 5.5-hour day at their disposal are in the situation of either not being able to book a program or having to opt out of an already booked program.
Full 6.5 Hour Day Plan
- 9:00 Arrive at river staging area for welcome, safety information, gear and launch
- 10:00 Start rafting and interpretation to the first test site
- 10:30 Stop One… Arrive at the first test site for water quality monitoring
- 11:15 Leave the first stop and start rafting and interpretation to the lunch site
- 11:45 Stop Two… Arrive at the lunch site landing
- 12:15 Start the wastewater treatment plant walking tour
- 1:30 Leave the lunch stop and start rafting and interpretation to the second test site
- 2:00 Stop Three … Arrive at the second test site for water quality monitoring
- 2:30 Leave the second test site and start rafting and stewardship interpretation to the river take-out
- 3:00 Arrive at the river take-out to return gear
- 3:30 Board school buses
RiverWatch staff appreciates receiving school arrival and departure times well in-advance in order to consult and plan for the best possible educational experience. Three stops are the core of RiverWatch programming and available time will determine which additional activities are possible.
Groups and buses arrive at downtown Dawson Park to begin their river adventure at Rowland Road and north on 89 St.
If you have trouble locating the drop-off or become delayed in traffic,
please contact at
A slow float past a 1900’s city dump below Jasper Avenue reveals a time capsule of history eroding out of the river bank.
First Test Site
An upstream island stop in sight of Wayne Gretzky Drive Bridge provides control data for water quality analysis.
A stop at 50 St. and 109 Ave Capilano Park and 50 St. Pedway is our picnic shelter lunch and walking tour of the EPCOR Gold Bar Wastewater Treatment Plant.
We cruise past exposed geological layers of coal and sandstone millions of years old buried below Ada Boulevard.
Second Test Site
A downstream gravel bar stop at the mouth of Gold Bar Creek and Ainsworth Dyer Pedway provides the experimental data for water quality analysis and a walking exploration of the creek valley.
The 8 km river tour ends in east Edmonton at Strathcona Science Park and Sunridge Skill Hill.