We love where we work!
From the river to the mountains to the town of Golden itself, the environment we immerse ourselves in daily creates quite an enjoyable atmosphere. It is a reason the majority of our staff return year-after-year.
But just like the river itself, there are always challenges to overcome.
And that is the beauty of rivers – they are constantly flowing, and always changing. It is one of the many reasons it has taught us so much throughout the years.
Here are some of the lessons our staff have picked up while spending most of their summer hanging out in an old barn that just so happens to be our rafting warehouse.
“You can overcome anything.”
Running a rafting company has its challenges, something that Carmen Narancsik, one of Glacier’s owners, knows very well. In the years that she has managed the scene here, she has learned that you just need to be prepared for the unexpected.
“You can overcome anything,” she explains, adding that although you can plan for a day, it typically never works out the way you imagine. In addition to all the regular tasks that need to completed, new issues and problems tend to pop out of nowhere.
“You just find a way to deal with it all.” You need to be open, and you have to be adaptable, she adds.
There is a reason the old saying ‘confidence is key’ exists. It not only helps boost self-love, but it translates directly towards river culture as well – especially for raft guides who are responsible for the safety of their guests every day.
Raft guides have confidence – just ask anyone living in a river town – but sometimes they do forget that many guests have never experienced white water action before. Chad Nogler, one of our most seasoned guides, says that they need to maintain their confidence out on the water to help ensure guests feel comfortable and safe.
“But don’t listen to that ego of yours”, adds Chad.
Honesty is a virtue we all should strive to attain, and that stretches far beyond communication with others around you. Although that is important, it is yourself you need to be honest with.
This is one lesson raft guide Mike Reeder is reminded of every day he heads down the river.
“You are going to have bad lines, and bad days - especially with white water,” he explains. You just can’t be afraid to admit your mistakes, he adds, because you learn each time you are out on the water.
“And don’t dismiss what people say to you,” adding that feedback is only meant to benefit and make you a stronger paddler.
“The importance of priorities.”
When passion and drive take over, it is reflected in the environment. This is one lesson Laura Kluz, a member of our office staff, has witnessed first-hand during her couple of years working at Glacier.
Even though Glacier is a rafting company, rafting is not necessarily the personal priority for each staff member.
“Everyone here is so active all the time – whether it is mountain biking, hiking or kayaking,” explains Laura. “You really start to understand that this lifestyle focuses on the importance of personal priorities - whether that is an adventure or a simple activity such as reading.”
This is health, she says, and one of the most important kinds.
Because although physicality is an important aspect of the job, the mental component plays a vital role in ensuring staff come to work alert and happy.
“When people find happiness through a focus, it really allows their personality to shine,” adds Laura.
“Teamwork, teamwork, teamwork.”
We are a tight team here at Glacier, and we would not run successful trips if we did not acknowledge that it takes all of our staff to run the show.
From guides to drivers to office staff to photographers, we all have our roles which help to contribute to another fun day on the river for our guests.
Teamwork plays a huge part in ensuring the days run smoothly, and most of our staff have different educational and work backgrounds, so everyone’s strengths are utilized. This creates a fun, yet resourceful team dynamic.
“You learn to play to strengths,” explains Chad. “Like the Intro Talk. I am horrible at it, so I let other people do that.”
No matter who is working, or what obstacles we face - whether it is out on the river, or back at the warehouse – we work through it all. Together.
We have learned to be serious when we have to be, joke when the time is right, and at the end of the day, we typically find a way to laugh at the circumstances we put ourselves in.
“We are so team-spirited, we really are like one big family,” says our star driver Dwayne, adding a little fist-pump action.
We all wake up. We go after it.
Then we repeat.
Cheers from all of us here at Glacier!