Get the dates in your diary for the 2023 PRANZ Annual Meetup in Reefton.
Thurs 26 – Sun 29th January, 2023
PRANZ’s Annual Meetup is back for 2023! Join us for the largest gathering of packrafters and great on and off river experiences.
This year, we will be gathering for the first time in Reefton, for three days of paddling, learning, fun and meeting new people to paddle with.
Your registration fees include:
- An amazing 3-4 days of packrafting camaraderie
- 3 nights accommodation (camping or dorm) AND 3 evening meals AND 3 breakfasts
- Talks, workshops and FUN!
LOCATION Reefton Hideaway, 20 Crampton Road, Reefton
About The PRANZ National MeetUp
The PRANZ National MeetUp is back for 2023, this year in the beautiful west coast town of Reefton. Come along and meet others with a common interest and enthusiasm for packrafting. Meet and learn from more advanced paddlers, share your adventures, offer others your knowledge and experiences, and make new friends.
Gentle Annie Gorge, Grey River Photo: Sheralee MacDonald
National Packrafting Meetup locations are chosen for their variety of accessible river sections, with mainly G1-2+ options (portagable G3) for low or high river flows and oh the scenery! For 2023, we will be based for the first time in the historic town of Reefton, with lots of amenities in town like a 4Square, bakeries, a gin factory (!), movie theatre, and rivers of course. So many packrafting opportunities! There are tracks, rivers, open tops, bike trails, all accessible and in stunning forest. A choice of rivers, runs and grades including Inangahua, Waitahu, Grey – Upper/Lower nearby and the Maruia and Arnold within an hours drive if needed (if there’s not enough water near town!). The location is also ideal for adding pre and post meetup runs on the Grey (overnighter), Buller etc.
This is the main national event for the association and relies heavily on volunteer work to make it happen. We could not do it without you! Please note in your registration what you’re happy to help out with.
Note that the meetup is not for first-time paddlers and PRANZ does not provide instruction.
If you are new to packrafting and want to attend, please take a beginner course well in advance and get some time on the river first!
1 BE A PRANZ MEMBER: Only PRANZ members can attend $45 (1 July – 30 June membership year)
2. REGISTER for the event here. We need these details for dietary requirements and planning purposes.
3. PURCHASE EVENT TICKET $215 (+booking fees) for members:
4. Make sure you are on the 2023 National Meetup event on PRANZ Facebook to keep up to date with changes and announcements.
Grey River Photo: Sheralee MacDonald
The Eighth National PRANZ Meet-up
This will be number eight. It follows the successful pioneering National Packrafting Meet initiated by Dulkara Martig at Murchison (2016), the first official PRANZ meet at Boyle River (2017), Te Anau (2018) Hanmer Springs (2019), Queenstown (2020), St Arnaud (2021), and Wanaka (2022).
The dates are Thursday through to Sunday. Don’t forget to add a few more days onto your visit to tackle some of the nearby packraft adventures. Get a team together and set out on your own adventure after the Meet-up.
What To Expect
Registration fees include three nights of accommodation (camping/bunk room) at Reefton Hideaway (20 Crampton Road, Reefton), 3 breakfasts, 3 evening meals, talks/workshops, and daily paddles organized by PRANZ.
SCHEDULE AND ACCOMMODATION
Your ticket fees cover three nights of accommodation (camping/bunkrooms) at our Reefton Hideaway base – from Thursday 26 January to Saturday 28th. The event officially starts in the afternoon of Thursday 26 January with registration at the Reefton Hideaway from 2 – 4 pm and a self-rescue/gear check/safety refresher and short float from the Inangahua Swing Bridge from 4pm. We will need to checkout from the Reefton Hideaway in the morning of Sunday, January 29th.
TRANSPORT AND CARPOOLING
Parking capacity is very limited at several of the put-ins and a couple of runs have long shuttles so we are looking into options for vans and encouraging carpooling. Please bring cash $5’s/$10’s to contribute to drivers.
Please make an effort to commute with others if possible. Check out the Facebook event page to connect with others.
Grey River Photo: Sheralee MacDonald
DAY PACKRAFTING TRIPS
The Meetup will include options for packrafting each day depending on weather and river flows. These options will be discussed at briefings each morning. These trips at the event are entirely volunteer-led, and we have established a Kaiarahi programme to offer additional training and support to those volunteers who step up to role-model good group paddling practice at these events. Outings take place on sections of rivers with rapids up to class 3. We do our best to have volunteer-led trips for everyone, but please remember that we only have as many trips as the volunteers are willing to lead. Be kind to your trip leader 🙂 Any packrafters wishing to run local sections that include rapids above class 3 can do so at their discretion outside of the PRANZ event.
We have booked the Reefton Hideaway for the event, which offers rustic dorm/camping accommodation for up to 80 people, including some lounge/meeting rooms and an outdoor BBQ area, and kitchen. As the kitchen is quite small, and the Hideaway is known for amazing group meals, we have included the breakfasts and evening meals in the fee. This will allow a good amount of time for socialising with everyone in the evening and for us to have a variety of talks and workshops to learn new things off-river too!
DIDYMO – there will likely be didymo present. Please read the following link about Didymo, and follow the CHECK, CLEAN, DRY procedure before coming to a PRANZ event, and between each waterway you paddle. http://www.packrafting.org.nz/didymo/
You can drive via Christchurch, the West Coast or Nelson Marlborough. Reduce your carbon footprint by posting on the event if you need a ride.
Nearest Airports are Westport, Nelson and Christchurch. The Interislander and Bluebridge Ferries should be booked well in advance if taking a car across the strait.
The PRANZ national meetup is a great place for newer paddlers to meet others and hone their skills but isn’t for absolute beginners. We expect that participants will have done a packrafting beginners course or other whitewater paddling training. Check out our list of training providers.
Thanks to our PRANZ Meetup 2023 Supporters
Watershed Dry Bags