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The Gorge Paddling Center

We started the Gorge Paddling Center so we could share our love of river recreation with others. Our staff has dedicated countless hours of their lives pursuing their passions in water sports. Our team consists of the most experienced and safe guides, rentals staff, and instructors.

Todd Anderson - Owner, Instructor/Guide

A true Hood River local, Todd  graduated from Hood River Valley High School in 2003. He became immersed in the sport of whitewater kayaking while attending school at the University of Oregon. After completing his bachelor's degree, he traveled to film and compete amongst the best in the sport and placed at the top of the podium in many international events. During the summers, Todd would return to Hood River to share his passion with others teaching whitewater kayaking and leading flatwater tours. His love for water sports expanded when he discovered stand up paddleboarding, and he is currently a national team member for BIC Stand Up Paddleboards. 
Todd's business has developed at the scenic Hood River waterfront location, which has made renting kayaks and stand up paddleboards safe and easy for anyone to access. He is happy to provide the opportunity for new paddlers to discover their own love for kayaking and stand up paddleboarding with the Gorge Paddling Center.

Lucy Swaffield - Tour Guide Extraordinaire

Let Lucy lead you on an awesome trip this summer.  Lucy grew up boating and paddling on the lakes and tidal rivers of South Carolina. She developed a love for being on the water at a young age and has since made recreation her life's work. She holds a degree from Clemson University in Parks Recreation Tourism Management. Since moving out West, she has enjoyed exploring all the natural wonders that this area has to offer.  As a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist and with a background in adaptive sports, she believes that everyone can benefit from the power of recreation and play.  

Nick Dancer- Rental Site Manager 
Nick first joined the Gorge Paddling Center family as a teenager when he was a student in Todd's whitewater kayaking lessons. He grew up in the organization and is excited to return for his fourth season as Rental Site Manager. Nick is an avid kayaker and enjoys weight lifting which makes running the Rental Site the perfect fit for Nick! Whether kayak or SUP board, Nick will ensure you are geared up for a fun day on the water. 

     Equal opportunity recreation provider permitted by the USDA Forest Service.