Angels Camp, California – December 8, 2009 – O.A.R.S. West, a subsidiary of the O.A.R.S. Family of Companies (O.A.R.S.), announced today their official selection as a Grand Teton National Park Service concessions provider. The 40-year-old international whitewater rafting, sea kayaking and multi-sport adventure travel company secured a 10-year contract to operate rafting trips on the Snake River and sea kayaking tours on Jackson Lake.
O.A.R.S. President and Founder, George Wendt, stated from his Northern California headquarters, “This 10-year contract for which O.A.R.S. has been selected is quite unique. In addition to being able to run guided rafting trips on the Snake River in Grand Teton National Park, we are the only company authorized to run sea kayaking trips on the beautiful waters of Jackson Lake, located at the base of the spectacular Grand Teton mountain range. Additionally, we are the only river and lake concessioner to be permitted to operate overnight trips in Grand Teton National Park.”
Wendt continued, “One of the camps that we will use is especially unique. Located near the scenic western shore of Jackson Lake, the Grassy Island camp provides unforgettable views of Mt. Moran and other peaks in the Teton Range.”
O.A.R.S. will be offering trips in Grand Teton National Park ranging from one day and one night to trips of three days and longer. With the company’s camps at three different locations on Jackson Lake, it is anticipated that many passengers will opt for a five- or six-day trip as part of a very unique multi-sport vacation that includes a visit to neighboring Yellowstone National Park.
The National Park Service selects a limited number of private companies to operate in approximately 135 parks in the National Park System. Concessions contracts are issued to businesses that provide a variety of commercial visitor services ranging from restaurants, lodging, gift shops, backcountry guides, horseback rides, whitewater rafting and a variety of other services unique to the National Park Service.
Founded in 1969 as the first exclusively oar-powered rafting outfitter in the Grand Canyon, O.A.R.S. helped pioneer whitewater rafting in the western U.S. The company has a long history of operating guided river trips in other national parks including Canyonlands National Park and on the family-friendly Green and Yampa rivers in Dinosaur National Monument. Building on a strong history of operating in U.S. national parks and wild spaces throughout the West, O.A.R.S. also offers unique itineraries in Arches, Yellowstone and Yosemite national parks.
O.A.R.S. has recently built a new warehouse with employee housing for its guides in Jackson, Wyoming to serve its operations in Grand Teton and Yellowstone national parks. The company is committed to operating environmentally sustainable trips that are low carbon-emitting. During the last two years the company has utilized 100% solar power at two of its western outposts, and it plans to install more solar power units at its other western operational facilities as finances allow.
At the time of this announcement, Mr. Wendt also mentioned the company would welcome discussions with investors about either an active or passive role in the company’s finances. Attractive returns for loans secured by its Jackson, Wyoming real estate are available.