Reserve A Trip

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FAQ's for Whitewater Rafting

First, let us answer a question we hear frequently:

Several outfitters run the same rivers and rapids as Crab Apple, so what sets Crab Apple apart from the others?

Crab Apple is family owned and operated with family members being part of every trip. Since 1983, we have worked hard to maintain an atmosphere and a staff that is committed to treat each guest as the most important guest of the year. We have grown to become the largest outfitter in New England. Our riverside base camps in Maine and Massachusetts are unmatched in New England. Our equipment emphasizes safety and personal comfort - rafts and inflatable kayaks that are the perfect size for each trip, clean wetsuits and comfortable life jackets. Also, the "little things", such as excellent food, friendly reservationists and a veteran staff that returns year after year. Finally, experience - Crab Apple runs more trips each season on the Deerfield and Kennebec Rivers than any other outfitter. More trips means better guides and better rides!

River Related Questions

When is the best time to raft?

SPRING because of higher water, bigger rapids and LOWER PRICES. Spring also brings a beautiful array of color and blooms.

SUMMER because water levels are guaranteed on our DAM CONTROLLED RIVERS and the water warms to 70 degrees and higher.

FALL because the water is still comfortable, the crowds are gone and the foliage is spectacular!

In other words, there is no "best" time to raft. All three seasons offer special features. top

Will there be enough water for my trip?

YES! Our rivers are dam controlled and we get guaranteed release schedules on each of our rivers. These releases guarantee good whitewater throughout our season. top

What should I wear?

Comfortable swim wear and flexible, secure footwear (sneakers, river sandals, water shoes) are the basics. Cap or visor, sunscreen and sunglasses (with strap) are also good ideas. Running shorts worn over swim wear maximizes comfort for women.

Important Clothing for Spring / Fall and cool / rainy days:

Will I need a wetsuit?

Wetsuits are required in Spring and Fall. During the summer, we make a recommendation based on the day's weather. If you don't own your own, we rent wetsuit jackets ($10), overalls ($10) and boots ($5) or all three for $20. We maintain over 400 wetsuits sized from Youth Small (50 lbs) to XXXXL. Each suit is washed after each use and stored and dried indoors for maximum comfort.

What else should I bring?

It is wise to bring more warm clothing than you think you might need on the river. For after the trip, bring a towel, change of clothes and shoes. $$$ - Each of our three locations houses a fun store where you may purchase pictures of your trip in addition to a fine selection of apparel and souvenirs. In Maine, our pub and restaurant will also be open for relaxing after trips. In Massachusetts, our snack bar will be open for a drink or snack on our deck overlooking the river. top

What do rapid classifications mean?

Rapids and rivers are subjectively rated Class I through Class V for commercial rafting. Ratings depend on the volume of water, elevation drop in the river, type of watercraft, ease of rescue and recovery and a paddler's experience. To simplify this for our guests, we can divide them into three groups:

Family/Introductory—an introduction to rafting, option for families with younger children. Trips range from Class I - III.

Deerfield-Fife Brook Section, Dead River—Summer, Float Trips.

Adventure—for guests already familiar with whitewater or new paddlers who are gung-ho and ready for a real thrill. These trips range from Class III-IV and may include a Class V or two.

Kennebec, Deerfield-Monroe Bridge, West, Miller's.

World Class—trips for guests who preferably have whitewater experience. Rapids will be long, continuous and will range from

Class III - V.


Dead River High Water, Go For It trips, top

Will my trip be photographed or videotaped?

In Maine, our trips are both photographed and videotaped. Our videographer kayaks down the river with the rafts and gets spectacular footage every day! Both the photos and video are shown in a large, comfortable viewing area at our base after the trip. In Massachusetts and Vermont, photos of your trip are shown at our base after each trip. Our new digital photography set-up is awesome! We also print all of our pictures from both locations "in-house", guaranteeing higher quality for our guests. top

What is for lunch?

We offer two river lunches depending on the trip you choose - a fresh, hearty picnic style buffet with homemade desserts or a delicious steak, chicken, fish or vegetarian option barbecue served back at our base. We take great pride in the fact that the food at Crab Apple is one of the highlights of our trips.  Each meal is prepared fresh daily and includes homemade salads, desserts and seasonal options like soups and cider. top

Money Saving Ideas

How can I save money?

Rafting rates are lower in the early and late season on many of our trips. Weekday rates are lower than weekend rates. You can save money by rafting with us two or more days in a row. Group leaders can earn FREE trips by bringing a group of friends or family or lower each person's ticket price depending on the number in your group. Finally, check out our Internet Specials for upcoming discounts and special offers. top

Do you offer group discounts?

Yes. We offer a choice of discounted rates or free trips based on the number of people in your group. See our Group Outings page for details. We also offer discounts for YOUTH GROUPS. Check out our Boy and Girl Scout, School, College, YMCA, Recreation Department, Summer Camp and Religious Youth Group Programs.top

Do you offer family discounts?

We run a family business and are sensitive to families' needs. Our two most popular river trips, the Kennebec and Deerfield - Fife Brook Section have Adult and Children's prices. Several other trips also include children's pricing. top

Do you offer midweek discounts?

Our two most popular river trips, the Kennebec and Deerfield - Fife Brook Section have midweek pricing. Several other trips also offer midweek pricing. top

Do you sell gift certificates?

Absolutely! We sell Gift Certificates for raft trips, snowmobile rentals and lodging. Gift certificates are a great gift idea for special occasions like graduations, birthdays, weddings, etc! top

Making Reservations

How far in advance do I need to make reservations?

There is no simple answer to this frequently asked question. Some of our trips sell out months in advance, some never sell out. State regulations limit the number of passengers we can carry, so early reservations ensure a spot on your desired trip date. However, if you are looking for a last minute trip, we can often accommodate you. top

Can I request my guide?

Please do! Our guides look forward to taking their favorite crews down the river again and again. But please remember that your favorite Crab Apple guide may already be requested or have other commitments preventing us from making any guarantees. top

How do I make reservations?

Speak with our reservation staff at 1-800-553-RAFT(7238). The office is coordinated by Sharyn and Carrie, so be assured that this part of the process has family members involved also. We feel that this opportunity to ask questions and get information from our staff is important. top

How do I pay?

Payments for trips can be made by MasterCard, Visa, personal check or money order. top

What are your reservation and cancellation policies?

Reservations made more than 60 days in advance of your trip date require the following deposit within 7 days of your phone reservation:

Quality and Safety Issues


Will I need to sign a Liability Waiver?

Each participant will be required to sign a waiver of liability before each trip. Please call our office at 800-553-7238 and we will be happy to mail or fax one to you or click on this liability waiver link and print the form. top

What is the alcohol and drug policy?

No drugs or alcohol are permitted before or during a trip. Violators of this policy may not raft, and no refund will be given. All of our facilities hold liquor licenses and due to state laws no other alcohol will be permitted on Crab Apple property. top

Should I bring my medication? Can I take it on the raft?

Always bring medications which you may need on the river or during your stay - asthma inhaler, bee sting kit, etc. Any medications can be kept dry and safe in our first aid kits on the river. top

Is my child too young to raft?
Each of our trips has a minimum age. Five years old is our youngest rafter on our Deerfield River Float Trips, Funyaks and Kennebec River Float Trip. top

Are there any physical limitations?

Pregnant women, persons with a heart condition and anyone with a medical problem that could be affected by the heat, cold, exertion, excitement, etc. of a raft trip should not raft. We reserve the right to refuse anyone the opportunity to participate in any of our adventures because of a medical, physical or size limitation that we feel might expose them to extreme risk. Contact our office with questions concerning these policies. top

Does Crab Apple carry cell phones on the river?

Because there is limited cell phone service on most of our trips, we carry Satellite Phones and cell phones only on trips with good service. Crab Apple is among a small group of outfitters to offer this service in Maine, Massachusetts or Vermont. top

Can I smoke at any Crab Apple facility?

Each of our rafting facilities is smoke free. In Maine, our lodging facilities, pub and restaurant are all smoke free. top

Will trips run in the rain?

Raft trips will not be cancelled due to weather unless Crab Apple deems that travel to the river from base camps or safety on the river will be compromised. Cancellations would be decided the morning of a trip at Crab Apple and full refunds issued.

3 Lake Moxie Rd; the Forks, ME 04985
phone: 1-800-553-RAFT(7238)
email: info@crabapplewhitewater.com
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