Great place! Everything is within 15 minutes but still feels secluded. Great staff and reasonable prices. - Deanna

Fanfreakintastic time on the upper Taylor! Yummy food at The Smokehouse! Best day in Colorado I've had! Loved it! - Sissy

Stop searching......just stay here. Awesome cabins with exceptional staff. - Michael

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Whitewater on the Upper Taylor!

Swim Day

Raft Guide Training

Guide Fly Fishing Trips

2020 Raft Guide Training Course

Three Rivers Outfitting has been offering Raft Guide Training for over 25 years. The 2020 will be held from May 18th to May 28th. Participants are encouraged to participate in both Raft Guide Training as well as the River Rescue Course (RRC). This intense course is held in both classroom and river environments and is recommended for those seriously interested in guiding commercially in Colorado. Classes are from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm each day, unless otherwise noted. After completing the course, participants will meet the minimum requirements to commercially guide rafts in Colorado. Three Rivers strives to put only our safest guides on the river with our customers so additional practice beyond the raft course is mandatory if you wish to guide commercially. Once the course is complete, guide trainees are invited to hone their skills on any of our commercial trips that go out twice daily. Completion of the course does not guarantee employment.  If needed, you can check out gear for the entire class: PFD (personal flotation device), neoprene booties, splash top/bottom, wet suit. After the class, you will need to purchase your own gear in order to guide. 

Course Highlights & Information:

  • Equipment orientation, boat rigging, repair, maintenance, and safe boat loading techniques
  • Ample time spent on both oar and paddle guiding
  • Basic and advanced guide strokes
  • River dynamics and characteristics of moving water
  • River Hazards
  • Types, causes, and classifications of rapids
  • Self rescue and whitewater swim techniques 
  • Introduction to Rope Rescue Systems
  • Commercial Passenger Orientation
  • First Aid and CPR Certification
  • PFD, helmet, splash gear, booties, and wet suit provided
  • Minimum 18 years of age
  • Cost = $400.00

**If you are already a certified river guide, you will still be required to attend certain days of our raft guide training course and become proficient on our local rivers. There is a fee associated with this training depending on your experience and whether or not you have gained trip leader status. Please call for more information and ask for Dirk Schumacher.

Tentative Schedule for 2020 Raft Class

Each day, students should bring lunch (unless noted below), snacks, plenty of water and extra dry clothes to stay warm.  You’ll end up getting wet and cold on most days, BRING EXTRA WARM CLOTHES! Wear quick dry clothing, extra layers and avoid cotton shirts and socks. You can’t learn when you’re cold! 

    • Monday, May 18th: Registration, introductions, gear check-out, boat rigging/loading, safety briefing.  2-3 Hour oar trip on the Gunnison. 
    • Tuesday, May 19th: First Aid and CPR Training and 1-2 Oar trips on the Lower Taylor
    • Wednesday, May 20th: Upper Taylor paddle trips guided by instructors then Upper, Middle, Lower Taylor trips with students paddling.
    • Thursday, May 21st: Swim Day! Everyone swims, self rescues and uses throw bags.  BRING EXTRA WARM CLOTHES!
    • Friday, May 22nd: Oar trips on the Lower Taylor and paddle trips on the Upper Taylor.
    • Saturday, May 23rd: Paddle trips on the Upper Taylor.
    • Sunday, May 24th: Break Day
    • Monday, May 25th: All day paddle laps on the Upper Taylor.
    • Tuesday, May 26th: All day paddle laps on Upper or Lower Taylor
    • Wednesday, May 27th: All day on the Arkansas River – leave at 7 am SHARP, lunch provided, bring warm clothes/change of clothes, extra snacks, water and tip money for Arkansas guides
    • Thursday, May 28th: All day trip on the Lake Fork of the Gunnison (Class IV) with lunch provided by Three Rivers Smokehouse. Bring extra clothes, water and snacks.

*Schedule may change due to weather or other circumstances.

*Online First Aid/ CPR courses are not valid for river guiding certification in the state of Colorado.

*This course will fulfill the state of Colorado’s Minimum Requirements for river guiding. However, any employing outfitter will likely require you to go through additional training specific to their company operations.




Whitewater Rescue Technician – Two Course Dates Offered

The River Rescue Certification level 1 course is optional but required to guide our more advanced whitewater trips (class III+). This physically challenging course will be conducted by Matt Dvorak from Dvorak Expeditions in Nathrop, CO. Each two day course is intense, containing some classroom instruction and several hours of developing and practicing water rescue skills. The initial emphasis is on developing self-rescue skills. Other objectives include an in-depth look at: safety, line in water contact rescue, handling hazards and obstacles, understanding water dynamics and using basic rescue equipment. Classes start at 8:30 am. There will be two separate courses offered in 2019. Dates are below. The first course, starting on May 29th is a two day introductory swift water course suitable for those without much river experience.  The second course, beginning on May 31st is a 3 day Pro Course suitable for those are re-certifying or those who have previous boating or whitewater experience.

Level One Two Day Course: $200/person

River Rescue Certification Pro Three Day: $385/person

First course: May 29th & 30th                                                                  

Second course: May 31st thru June 2nd

Equipment Requirements & Course Information:

  • Full wet suit or dry suit
  • Lightweight helmet
  • USCG approved PFD (Type III or V)
  • River shoes or hard soled booties
  • Gloves, knife, whistle, throw bag are recommended but optional
  • Minimum 18 years of age
  • Basic swimming ability
  • Good physical condition
  • Call Three Rivers directly to book; 970-641-1303

Willowfly Anglers 2020 Fly Fishing Guide School

Willowfly Anglers at Three Rivers Resort will be offering a professional fly fishing guide school from May 11 to 15, 2020. Course size will be limited to 12 participants to ensure the highest quality experience possible. Classes will run from 8 am to 5 pm each day. Instruction includes classroom time and “on the water” instruction on local waters. 

Why choose Willowfly Anglers Fly Fishing Guide School?

Willowfly Anglers Guide / Instructor

Willowfly Anglers is an Orvis-Endorsed Outfitter and has thrived for over 35 years with some of the best guides in the industry. Our guides have over 100 years of combined guiding and instructional experience.

  • We offer a variety of local water not often found in one location: Tailwater, Freestone, Small Creeks and Stillwater (on-site pond and 2 large local reservoirs).
  • Equipment is included in the cost: waders, boots, rods, reels.
  • Private water on site and private boat ramps accessing the Taylor River and Gunnison River.
  • Thorough curriculum including: Instruction from an FFF Master Casting Instructor, Fly tying with a Professional Tyer, entomology, ethics, wading, guide professionalism and client management.
  • Guest Speaker from our local Trout Unlimited Chapter.
  • On site lodging included!
  • Small class size to ensure high quality experience.
  • Large network of outfitters for employment referrals.
  • Great local fishing pre-runoff during May.
  • Discount offered for the raft guide course (which will fulfill the minimum qualifications for float guiding in Colorado) if registered for both.
  • The best value of any guide school!
    Hotels Crested Butte, Gunnison, Colorado

    Lodge Room at Three Rivers Resort

Tuition for the 2020 school is $1460.00 per student and includes 6 nights of lodging, class materials, the use of waders, boots, rods and reels, and a diploma upon completion. Not included are a Colorado fishing license, leaders, tippet, flies, and meals. The lodging included consists of a hotel-style lodge room at Three Rivers Resort, where the guide school will be based. The room is spacious and includes a queen size bed, fold-out futon, private bathroom and kitchenette (refrigerator, kitchen sink/counter area, small table, toaster oven, microwave and coffee maker).

If enrolling in both the Fishing Guide School and the Raft Guide Training course, overall tuition may be reduced by $100.

Completion does not guarantee employment.  As an Orvis-Endorsed outfitter, we have a large network of outfitters to which we can refer graduates for possible employment opportunities. 

Registration closes April 27, 2020. 

Private on-site wading

Topics covered include:

  1. Being a guide: what it takes and what to expect
  2. Conservation and outdoor ethics
  3. Necessary guiding equipment
  4. Aquatic entomology
  5. Rigging and knots
  6. Trout holding water and behavior by season
  7. Casting instruction
  8. Wading techniques and safety

Required for participation:  Have a valid Colorado fishing license and be at least 18 years of age.

Tentative 2020 Agenda:

Sunday, May 10th: Arrive, check into lodge room and get settled.

Monday, May 11th: AM Classroom/Lunch/PM Wading

Tuesday, May 12th: AM Classroom and Casting/Lunch/PM Classroom and Casting

Wednesday, May 13th: AM Fly Tying/Lunch/PM wading

Thursday, May 14th: All Day Wading

Friday, May 15th: All Day Wading/Classroom Finals & Graduation

Saturday, May 16th: Check out of lodge room





Offline Enrollment 
To enroll in the Raft Guide or Whitewater Rescue course, click here: Online Raft Course Registration. To enroll in the Fly Fishing Guide School, click here: Online Fishing Guide School Registration. Please fill out the form(s), sign, then fax or mail to Three Rivers Resort. Be sure to include any deposits indicated in the course description when mailing the form. If you are faxing the form, please fill out the appropriate credit card information on the form. Do not email us your credit card information. If you intend to work as a raft guide or fishing guide with Three Rivers Outfitting/Willowfly Anglers after you have completed the course, please also send us your job application.

Click here to download a Job Application in Word. Click here to download a Job Application in PDF. Complete it and email it or print the application to complete and send by mail, fax or scan & email. 

Mail: PO Box 339, Almont, CO 81210      Fax: 970-641-1317.      Email:

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