River Signals

River Signals

by Dave Hammond

Universal Signs

  • Paddle or arms held horizontally and moved slightly up and down = Stop!
  • Paddle or arm held vertically in line with the body = Go.
  • Vertically held paddle or arm waved back and forth = Help!
  • Paddle held out at 45° (or as near as) to one side = go that way.
  • N.B. Never point at the hazard.

Signs agreed on within the group

  • Fist hitting open palm = hard landing.
  • Open hand hitting open palm at about 45° and skating off at 45° = boof move.
  • Hand held up with palm out and fingers stretched open = tree or sieve.
  • Pointing at outstretched tongue = tongue of water.
  • Fist hitting top of head = I’m okay, are you okay?
  • Hand pointing to the centre of head or stomach then travelling up and down the centre of the body = go centre.
  • Index finger pointing up and moved in a circular motion, then pointed in a certain direction = there is an eddy there to use.
  • Fist clenched and held up = rock.
  • Thumb and index finger held in a circle = hole.
  • Arm moved as if throwing a dart = throwbag needed to be used in direction indicated.