These summer heatwaves are getting Northwesterners out on the water! But not all of us are skilled or have the necessary equipment. In moments like these, we turn to the experts like Oregon River Experiences! We had a chat with Joel Swartzmiller from ORE, to learn more about him and his fantastic company.
How did you get started in your business?
I found my way to this industry when taking over the managing of this company when the owner, my cousin, passed away last year. During the last year, I came to love the people working for this company that make it their mission helping others discover and get access to our wild and scenic rivers.
What’s something about your business that not everyone knows?
We have been running the rivers of Oregon for 40 years! Oregon River Experiences was founded in 1978.
When you have a day off, what Pacific Northwest experiences do you like to go and enjoy?
I am a novice birder and truly enjoy hiking through our Urban parks to see the variety of birds we have. I also enjoy our wonderful golf courses, stand-up paddle boarding, and fly-fishing.
If you had to describe what you love about the Pacific Northwest in 3 words, what would you choose?
Abundant outdoor recreation!!
What do you feel sets your company apart from others?
In an industry fraught with machoism, we are proud to have as many female guides as male. This is a big hit with the groups of young ladies that raft with us. They get a great role model of a strong, smart, competent woman to guide them down the river.
Our thanks to Joel at Oregon River Experiences for taking the time to introduce himself to our audience. If you’d like to learn more about the 10 rivers that ORE rafts, or putting together a multi-day rafting vacation, visit their website or call: (800) 827-1358.
As a NW Native, Ashley is a fan of the beauty, creativity and history of the region. And as a mom of two, she also loves finding new family-friendly things to do all over the NW. Ashley Whitham is the Director of Marketing at USA River Cruises and Best of the Northwest.