The V Wave
Stay connected to the river...
April 2013, - Vol 7  Issue 1
In This Issue
Guide Portfolio
Canyon Wildlife Census
River Recipe
Photo Sharing Site Launched
Double Your Dollars
"Link" to AzRA
Sign Up
Join Our Mailing List!
Links picked just for you!

Lady in Waterfall
Hello and welcome again to the Arizona Raft Adventures' and Grand Canyon Discovery's  bi-annual e-newsletter. Now in the seventh year of publication,
The V Wave,
(named after the legendary wave in Lava Falls rapid) keeps you connected with AzRA Discovery, the river community, and the Canyon. If you have trouble viewing this email, please follow the link at the top of this message to view a web version. 

This issue features several topics including a profile on AzRA guide Alan Fisk-Williams, details about a cool Grand Canyon wildlife census and another yummy river recipe. You will also find a couple short blurbs about a donation promotion we are offering the month of April and our new LinkedIn Grand Canyon Rafting Group.

Finally, don't forget the links to the left. These Grand Canyon related links were chosen just for you.
(Photo by Ralph Hopkins)
Guide Portfolio - Alan Fisk-Williams
Alan Fisk-Williams
Do you know Mr. Alan Fisk-Williams? Alan has been rafting the Grand Canyon since his first trip in 1977. After 18 years of guiding for two smaller companies, he began guiding for Arizona Raft Adventures in 1995. He has thirty two seasons on the Colorado River and loves sharing his broad range of natural and human history knowledge with the guests that he meets on the river. 


Alan graduated with a BA in Biology from the University of California at Berkeley in 1979. He received his Masters in Biology from Northern Arizona in 1984. Alan had a career as a science teacher from 1984 through 2010 where he had the privilege of teaching all over the world including Japan, Korea, and Germany.  In 2010, he retired from teaching and again works full seasons as a Grand Canyon river guide.

Alan lives in New Mexico with his wife Dayna. When he isn't guiding, he enjoys hiking, brewing beer and cross country skiing. He is also a current member of the Cloud Appreciation Society
where those who love clouds can unite under one cause. We asked Alan to tell us about one of his most memorable rafting experiences in which he responded, "On a Grand Canyon trip during the high water in 1983, I had the opportunity to swim and float around in the back of Redwall Cavern. I will never forget it." Today guests toss frisbees back and forth across the beach at Redwall Cavern. (Photo by Kim Fawcett)  
Voluntary Wildlife Census
Sheep by Roger and Lesley Pyne

Bridging the gap between biologists and those partaking in a Grand Canyon rafting trip, Grand Canyon River Runners Association (GCRRA) is facilitating the coordination of data collection for three wildlife studies in Grand Canyon: one on mammals, one on birds and one on snakes. The challenge of collecting data on animals in a vast and remote National Park like Grand Canyon is overwhelming. Incidental observations are an important source of data. River trips are a great way to observe certain species since the river and surrounding riparian habitat provides important components of desirable habitat. It is the biologists' and GCRRA's goal to recruit river runners to voluntarily record animal sightings throughout their 2013 river journey.


Brandon Holton, a wildlife biologist at Grand Canyon National Park, specializes in large mammal ecology. His studies focus on distribution patterns and habitat of the bighorn sheep, mule deer and cougars. Read more about the Mammal Study and download the log sheet.    


Janice Stroud Settles, also a wildlife biologist at Grand Canyon National Park, focuses on birds near Grand Canyon. Specifically, she studies Bald Eagles, Golden Eagles, Peregrine Falcons, Mexican Spotted Owls and Yellow-Billed Cuckoo.  Read more about the Bird Study and download the log sheet.  

Geoffery C. Carpenter, PhD, is a Professor of Herpetology at the University of Oklahoma. He is presently gathering data about snake sightings to determine their spatial distribution within the Canyon and to acquire new distribution records for some of the Canyon's less common snakes. Additionally, he is gathering data for a book named Amphibians and Reptiles of the Grand Canyon Region. Your sightings, and possibly your pictures, can be part of this project. Read more about the Reptile Study and download the log sheet.  


On the data sheets for each study, the volunteer can record the date, time of day, location, weather and what the animal was doing at time of sighting on a log sheet. These fun and interactive studies would be of particular interest to science-interested guests or those who simply enjoy spotting wildlife and participating in volunteer opportunities.To read more about the Wildlife Census Program please visit  
(Photo by Roger and Lesley Pyne)
Ramen Salad Recipe
Raman Salad
One of our top rated side dishes and highly requested recipe is the Ramen Noodle cabbage salad served with the chicken stir fry dinner. It is served on the second half of our non-motorized trips. Believe it or not, it's so easy and tasty! But remember the quantity below  serves 27 people. Adjust as needed.   
5 packages Raw Ramen Noodles (throw out the spice packets)

1/4 cup soy sauce or to taste 

1 bottle Rice Vinegar

2 heads green cabbage

1 head red cabbage

5 shredded carrots 

1 cup toasted sesame seeds

2 cups toasted sliced almonds   

Optional: cashews instead of almonds, sugar to sweeten, green onions 

Chop, mix and enjoy.  Sprinkle some sand on top if you are feeling nostalgic!   

(Photo by Kim Lucy) 

Photo Sharing Site Launching in 2013 Season
AzRA Shutterfly Image
Beginning in the 2013 river season, we will launch a new photo sharing web page for guests. The goal of the new site is to ease photo sharing between guests and guides after everyone returns from their trip. The staff at AzRA began noticing that guests were starting to set up their own photo sharing sites and other guests were recommending that AzRA help facilitate the photo sharing.

This photo sharing site is hosted by Shutterfly, an internet-based photo sharing and publishing service best known for their photo book line. It is our intention to not only provide guests with a common location to share photos after a Grand Canyon rafting trip but also to make it easier to order photo books, calendars, prints and other trip memorabilia straight from Shutterfly.  

Double your donation $$ for Earth Day!
Grand Canyon Wildlands Image
Earth Day 2013 is Monday, April 22. In honor of Earth Day,
AzRA is matching your donation dollar for dollar
up to $100 per person, if you make a charitable contribution to the Grand Canyon Wildlands Council in the month of April 2013.  The
Grand Canyon Wildlands Council (GCWC) focuses on habitat restoration and ensuring the existence, health, and sustainability of all native species and natural ecosystems in the Grand Canyon ecoregion.

In addition to GCWC's ongoing preservation efforts, they have an exciting project underway supporting conservationist & athlete John Davis on his 5000 mile, human-powered journey from Mexico to Canada which began on April 3. The goal of his trek is to promote the habitat corridor conservation and the GCWC is sponsoring John for 3 months of his ten month trek. You can find out more about this intriguing project and follow the expedition at Arizona Raft Adventures is supporting TrekWest by supporting GCWC.    

As our guest, we extend to you a limited time offer. Print off this form and mail your contribution directly to the Grand Canyon Wildlands Council at PO Box 1594, Flagstaff, AZ 86002. Thank you for your generosity and Happy Earth Week to everyone! 
"Link" to AzRA
Linked In
AzRA has joined the world of LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a business oriented social networking site. It provides the opportunity to connect with others on a professional level and is considered to be an interactive resume, allowing members to search and post job opportunities. For AzRA, the most important aspect to LinkedIn is the opportunity to connect and share valuable information with other LinkedIn members. AzRA is excited to announce the Grand Canyon Rafting Group. The Grand Canyon Rafting Group is a forum created to allow guests the platform to share information, ask questions, answer questions, and marvel in the reveries of your rafting trip with other Grand Canyon enthusiasts. You will also find educational and informative articles posted to the Arizona Raft Adventures LinkedIn home page. Take a moment and join us on LinkedIn today!  


Joining LinkedIn is free and easy:

To Connect/Follow Arizona Raft Adventures:
  • Once logged in to LinkedIn, in the LinkedIn search bar type Arizona Raft Adventures.
  • After you select the Arizona Raft Adventures page, double click the "Follow" button on the upper right hand corner and receive Grand Canyon notifications in your personal update newsfeed.
  • Log into your LinkedIn account, and search the LinkedIn search bar for
    Grand Canyon Rafting.
  • Click on the "Join Group" button on the top of the page to receive and share Grand Canyon rafting information with fellow/future rafters. Post a question, answer a question and share a story, picture or joke. Help others plan their upcoming rafting trip! 

We are available for free Skype to Skype international phone calls during our regular business hours. Our contact name is arizona.raft.adventures.


Before we close this issue of The V Wave, we would like to remind you AzRA has a Facebook Page,  YouTube Channel, Pinterest Page, and we are on Twitter. Our Facebook page features a Tip of the Week, photos, discussions from guests, announcements, spotlights of each trip, and more. Pinterest and Twitter are great social media resources to keep you in touch with AzRA and Grand Canyon National Park. Our YouTube Channel features video clips and AzRA's five promotional clips. Please share these video clips on your social media sites. If you have not viewed AzRA's YouTube channel lately, you might like to visit it again as there have been many new videos from our guests and guides added to our Favorites list.

Once again we would like to thank you for taking time to read our newsletter and for giving us river seasons full of wonderful memories. We hope you will choose to continue receiving this publication so we may stay connected. In fact, we appreciate input; if you have suggestions for future newsletters such as article topics, river stories, photos, poetry, or artwork to share, please email us.


See you downstream!


(Arizona Raft Adventures and Grand Canyon Discovery are concessioners under contract with the U.S. Government and administered by the National Park Service.)
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Arizona Raft Adventures and Grand Canyon Discovery

phone: toll free at 800-786-7238