Is the practice of canyoning risky? 4 tips to get started serenely

You feel the call of adventure and would like try canyoning ? You are right, at Exterior Nature, we are fans of this sporting activity in white water ! There canyon descent offers a unique experience in the heart of magnificent wild gorges. Jumps and abseils in refreshing waterfalls, slides along natural slides: it's a very fun hobby ! But before you get started, you might be wondering: is canyoning dangerous? We're not going to lie to you, this is a sport in nature that involves risks. But the good news is that by respecting our 4 essential safety measures, it is quite possible to practice canyoning in a serene way. We will explain everything to you :

Is canyoning dangerous?

Canyoning: a risky sporting activity?

By definition, canyoning is a risky sport. Practiced in a natural environment, canyoning is subject to constraints inherent to the place of exercise : weather, water flow, gorges, cliffs, river, waterfalls, rocks, natural pools, etc. It is therefore obvious that this outdoor sport is probably more dangerous than ping-pong... But you suspected that, right?

This activity combines the techniques of climbing, hiking, caving and swimming in white water. All of these sports have physical difficulties and risks intrinsic to their outdoor practice. To know everything about canyoning, see our article: What is canyoning?

But do not panic ! Although zero risk does not exist, by following our four recommendations, You can practice canyoning in a safe way :

1. Use a qualified and experienced guide

Don't venture into a canyon alone. We're not going to cut corners: it's VERY dangerous! If this is not your job, you do not know where the basins deep enough to jump, the mooring points for abseiling and, in general, the different danger zones are.

One of the basic rules for practice canyoning safely is to call on a professional guide. The organization of canyoning outings is strictly regulated by law. Choose a guide holding the compulsory diplomas, recognized by the Ministry of Sports. Your instructor must also be covered by professional liability insurance.

In addition to degrees, choose a experienced canyoning instructor, who knows perfectly the canyons of the region. A good guide does not only accompany you on the adventure, he is also a seasoned teacher. He will be able to explain to you the technical, postures to adopt and safety instructions.

In addition to his knowledge, he will provide you with the materials and equipment needed to practice canyoning securely.

2. Check the materials provided by the guide

Before embarking on the adventure, take the time to check the equipment provided by your canyoning guide. It's about personal protective equipment (PPE) regulated and mandatory, CE approved and specifically designed for canyoning.

Make sure that the full neoprene suit, helmet, harness, descenders, ropes, and all other equipment, are in perfect condition and in your size. A holey suit is a very bad signal: on the one hand, it will protect you less well against blows and on the other hand, you risk getting cold! A dented or too large helmet is to be banned!

If you have any doubts, do not hesitate to discuss them with your guide.

Also remember to bring suitable shoes, sneaker type, with non-slip soles.

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3. Choose a canyon adapted to your level

Canyoning offers a wide variety of courses, adapted to different levels of practice : children, beginners, sportsmen, experienced canyonists, etc.

Canyoning is ideal for beginners and children from the age of eight. It's an excellent family activity idea !

There are also canyons reserved for sportsmen and seasoned canyonists. It is therefore essential to choose a canyon according to the age of the participants, the sporting level, the physical condition and the aptitudes of each.

In particular, check the outlet length which can vary from a few hours to half a day or the whole day. Pay attention to approach and return walking time and possibility or not of circumventing obstacles the most difficult and impressive, especially the jumps. Of course, practitioners must know how to swim and immerse yourself (putting your head under water) without fear, but also being able to walking on rough terrain.

To make your choice, nothing better than to benefit from the advice from a professional instructor. This will help you select the ideal canyon for your group, allowing you to fully enjoy the experience in complete safety.

4. Check weather conditions and water level

Before any canyoning outing, it is crucial to check the weather forecast. Consult the local weather report and prefectural decrees to make sure that no special alert is not in effect.

Also make sure that the water level in the canyon is adapted to your level of practice, as recent rainfall can cause significant variations in water flow.

Of course, your canyoning guide also has this responsibility, it's his job. But it's always good to keep tabs on the information yourself. Safety first !

Is canyoning dangerous? No, provided you play the safety card!

You are now ready launch into the adventure of canyoning in complete serenity ! Remember that the key to a successful and safe experience is to hire a professional canyoning guide. Choose an expert who will provide you with the appropriate equipment, who knows the canyons of the region well and who will be able to accompany you with pedagogy throughout the activity.

For an exceptional adventure in the Eastern Pyrenees, book a canyoning outing with Outdoor Nature ! Let yourself be guided by our professional and passionate instructors, and live a unique experience in peace, in the compliance with the strictest security measures. Enjoy the breathtaking landscapes of the region of Perpignan and share thrills and unforgettable memories with your loved ones. So, don't wait any longer, and discover the canyons of our beautiful region of southern France!

Discover all our canyoning outings in the Pyrénées-Orientales (66), for all levels: children, beginners, athletes and experienced. And for all information and advice in choosing your activity: