Madalyn Rainey

Professional River Guide


Where did you grow up?

Methven, New Zealand and Paso Robles, California

Where do you call home now?

It varies, but is usually close to the Pacific Ocean

Year started at OARS?


What’s the best part of your job?

I love when I get clients (especially kids) that fall in love with the river and rafting. There aren’t many jobs out there where you get to bring people into a space that brings you so much joy and show them why.

Tell us about your favorite rapid, hike or camp and what makes it special

My favorite rapid is “hospital bar” on the SFA. It isn’t the most technical, or challenging, or even the most beautiful rapid but it always catches people off guard and it always gets a good laugh. The best way to end the day if you ask me.

Do you have a lucky charm or special river tradition?

I don’t currently have a lucky charm or river tradition but I plan on making some things tradition this season so check back in next year.

What can you not live without on a trip?

My BARE sunscreen face stick (not a sponsored post I just swear by it)

Fun fact, special talent or favorite guiding memory

One of my favorite guiding memories was when was in a training boat on the North Fork. We had just flipped in one rapid and things weren’t looking very good for us in the next and Poul (the guide) started to laugh and we all just started laughing so hard. We laughed our way through one of the uglier staircase lines I’ve seen and I like to think it was our laughter that kept us in the boat.