Swimming in the Snake River is a great way to enjoy Hells Canyon on your next getaway. However, as with every other river, you must be aware of the inherent safety concerns and how to navigate them. Next time you go swimming in a river, follow these helpful safety tips.

Always Enter Feet First

The Snake River is not like your swimming pool at home! There’s a noticeable current, and the depths change frequently. Get a better feel for the swimming conditions by getting into the water feet first. This way, you’ll be able to feel how strong the current is and the direction it’s moving. You’ll also have a chance to determine how deep the water is.

Schedule Your Swim Properly

Before you get into the water, understand what’s happening on the river that day. Check the local weather to ascertain wind levels and the temperature of the water. Make sure you schedule plenty of time for swimming before it gets dark out; swimming at night poses additional dangers, especially in a river.

In addition, be wary of other vessels on the river. A Snake River boat tour is a great experience as a passenger, but it’s best to lay off the swimming when jet boats are involved.

Never, Ever Swim Alone

Even if you believe you’re a strong swimmer, open water is unpredictable and can be dangerous. Enlist at least one buddy—if you’re with loved ones, make river swimming a family activity! Any children who decide to go swimming should be accompanied by at least one adult. If you plan to cross the river at any point, make sure you’re in the company of other alert, strong swimmers.

Swimming in a river is a great way to soak up the sun and enjoy the natural beauty around you. Just make sure you’re aware of the potential hazards before you jump in! These helpful river swimming safety tips will serve as a reminder to stay alert and enjoy the waters of the Snake River.