Exciting water levels during this year’s canyoning training of the Tyrolean gorge leaders demanded a lot from the candidates and trainers.

Also this year the course with 25 participants was completely booked. From 05.05.-13.05.2017 the participants from Austria, Germany, Slovenia, Switzerland and Italy learned the basic techniques and skills for committing gorges and guiding guests. In the tried-and-tested system, the techniques were presented the evening before in the PowerPoint lecture, practiced the next day in the drying room and then implemented in the appropriate gorges.

As we could expect after the heavy snowfall at the end of the winter, we had high water levels which provided for interesting tours. Thus, techniques such as releasable systems and anchors were also to be applied in a realistic manner. To the weather and the water levels we could go every day great and varied tours. Alpine tours with almost 100m high waterfalls or aquatic gorges with sporty water levels. The Wildwasswimmen on the Brandenberger Ache we could do this year with a perfect water level and a dream weather. A great day for sure.

The participants must now deepen the learned and apply it in internships. In summer, course II also takes place, in which special rescue techniques and first aid are trained in canyoning. Course III will also take place this year in Ticino, where the students have the possibility to apply and improve all learned skills. This is also where the final examination takes place.

The training was carried out by Alexander Riml (Training Director), Willewalter, Thomas Kracker, Gerald Senn, Ewald Holzknecht, Martin Gstrein

Text and pictures by Alexander Riml

Canyoning or canyoning as one says with us, what is it actually? The word describes a novel, fascinating activity in a partial untouched and magical landscape. In canyoning, watercourses are descended by descents, climbing, swimming, if possible by jumping and slipping. Here the sporting variety is combined with the challenge of rock and water in a prime landscape and offers countless adventures for everyone. To experience these challenges with pleasure, there are two possibilities.

First: Familiarize yourself with a certified and authorized canyoning and canyoning guide, who takes over the entire organization for the desired canyoning tour. The advantage of this possibility is that you can enjoy the tour and the nature experience to the fullest without having to worry about anything in advance.
The second possibility is to train for this sport, with an expert. During these training courses one learns the most important basics to move safely through a gorge. However, if you have to take this route, you have to be very slow in new tours, because canyoning needs a lot of experience.
The training for Canyoningguides is very comprehensive and covers the entire spectrum of canyoning and takes an average of up to 45 days. Here, as an example, the training route on the basis of the Tyrolean canyoning and gorge guide training.

Entrance examination:

Day 1: Here the candidates have to show whether they are suitable for the training. Only then can they participate in the legally required training. When registering, the candidates must submit a tour report, should the required tours not be available, then the applicant is not allowed to participate in entrance examinations.

The actual training is divided into three areas:

Basic training: 9 days
First aid, rescue and rescue part: 3 days
Guided tour (not in Tyrol mostly in Ticino): 7 days

Between the individual courses, the candidates have to pass some intermediate examinations, which allow an entry into the next course at all. However, the candidates must also complete a 14-day practice period with a trained and authorized canyoning guide between the first and third course parts, which must be documented by an accurate record. Furthermore the candidates must bring a prescribed tour report with 10 prepared topos for the final examination.

Exam subjects:

Rope and knot, topography, geology, weather, equipment and equipment, dangers and accidents, dealing with stress situations, watercourses, hydrodynamics, tour planning, tour management, foreign language, tourism. Wild water swimming, jumping techniques, planning and carrying out gorge tours
These subjects are taught practically and theoretically during the training. The theory lesson is always held by long-term trainers or guest lecturers.

Final exam:

2 days: Only persons who have fulfilled all theory tests, practical partial tests and requirements can be admitted to this examination. If a candidate does not fulfill the prerequisites for the final examination, he has to repeat the third course or the entire course.


Only if all these criteria are met, the candidate can be authorized by the competent authorities and from this point onwards is entitled to offer and conduct canyoning tours. For this reason, every authorized canyoning guide can also identify you, so ask for your canyoning guide before the start of the tour.


However, it is obligatory for every canyoning guide to undergo training at least every four years. If the canyoning guide fails to comply with this obligation, the authorization will be given to him and he is no longer entitled to lead the guests.

Text and pictures by Alexander Riml

This questions is asked a lot as well and is legitimate. Even with all the curiosity or euphoria, if you can handle it all by yourself. You should ask yourself a few questions:
Do I have the needed caynoning equipment and do I know how I have to use it?
Do I know the caynioning roping/saving technique, which differs very strongly form the alpine technique?
Do I have reliable information about the canyon? (Topography, approach, access, emergency escape, exit, mobile reception, level of difficulty)
How is my metrological knowledge respective weather changes?
Am I prepared for surprises (broken standing area, injuries) and can I handle them?
Do I know basics about reading the water respectivly fluid dynamics?
Should you be able to say „yes“ to all of these question without hesitation, then theoreticaly there is nothing in your way to take the tour on your own.
We recommand for practical experience: Search for a provider that offers caynoning classes on our website and start building up on your own level. This way it should be doable with enough personal responsibility. Thousands of ski tourers are doing this the same way each winter, when they take part in a trainging with the LVS.
In the south of France for example are some easy canyons which are walked through by families (almost without any equipment). In these regions the part of the private walkers is much higher as for example in Austria – which of course is a result of geology.

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Canyoning is an outdoor sport, which means, canyoning takes place outside almost every were, where water has formed a canyoing over thousands of years. In Europe it is limited  to the alps. Canyoning is offered in almost all tourism areas. Austria is surely a good address for it, as the nature offers everything form „mild to wild“ and is backened through the state unions with an established training for a canyoning guide. Even worldwide this sport is becoming more and more popular. On our page you can find a selection of professional canyoning providers through out Austria, just choose a region, pick the provider and let’s get started.
to the provider side

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By completing a training for a Canyoning-Guide. Training will be provided by different nations with different prices. Coution is reccomended here with some of them, as there are still many trainings that are not backed through the union or have no legal backing. This would start problems with the insurance company in case of an accident. The authority to give guided tours in other countries or other states can be restricted depending on the training. Therefore we reccomend a training with on of the state representatives of the Österreichischen-Bergsportführer-Verbands. Furthermore a mountain guide (IVBV) can take a training as a canyoning guide or an additional module.

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