Another calendar year of canyoneering has come to a close and a new one has begun. In 2022 the dedicated Team of ACA volunteers trained, assessed and certified more individuals than ever before. The workshops continued to be an excellent source of skill building and additional courses have expanded training opportunities inside and outside of the canyoneering community. As a group we worked within our established framework of standards, yet remained dynamic and adaptable as new opportunities arose. Incredible. So, on behalf of our ACA Membership and all who benefited from this generous gift of time and knowledge, I want to say a huge THANK YOU. Every person who helped make this a reality shared much of their time and passion. Well played Team ACA!
The ACA has recently returned from certifying 6 Professional Guides and 1 Assistant Canyon Leader on the Caribbean island of Dominica. Joe Storms, Bruce Shapiro and myself spent 8 days in a stunning jungle environment, training and assessing the guiding and technical skills of 7 fine gentlemen. The company’s name is Extreme Dominica, and they have been in operation as a professional canyoning guide service since 2007. They focus is on running high quality canyoning adventures for folks visiting the island via cruise ship.
LINK HERE for Facebook photos.
The owner of Extreme Dominica (EXDOM) is Niels Noteboom, a man of incredible talent and unending generosity. Every single need we had was handled easily, no matter how challenging the request. The support he gives the Team is inspirational. His Partner and Lead Guide Coordinator Mr. Nahgie Laflouf kept focus on optimizing every minute of our time with the Guides. When Nahgie says “no worries, we got this”, he means it. The whole program is run incredibly tight and it is a privilege be around and associated with such dedication to professionalism. A Five Star operation.
Our days started early at the shop, which is set up very nicely and has everything you need. Good music, fresh bread or pastries from Berani, a little bad dancing (me:) while we get into wetsuits, then we’d be on our way. To a canyon, to a river, to a canyon river….training, training, training. Each evening we’d finish up at late and get to the shop where Niels had a locally catered dinner ready to nourish our tired brains and bodies. The men focus and skill levels compelled each of us to dig deep inside and elevate our efforts to another level. One heck of an experience!
As a bonus, we met with the overseeing government authorities who are currently writing rules and regulations for commercial canyoning tours on the island. They are very dedicated to ensuring their Island has high quality guide services for visiting tourists, and it is great to see their proactive approach to finding a healthy balance between responsible tourism and protecting the Natural environment.
The ACA Instructors generous gifts of both time and knowledge is extraordinary on many levels, and we are incredibly fortunate to have such kind people on our Team. Instructors rock! The Attendees were attentive, super helpful and generous as well, offering to assist others in their endeavor to become stronger and smarter canyoneers. What a very nice thing to be around.