Truckee’s Bio Bio offers luxury adventure travel | SierraSun.com
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Truckee’s Bio Bio offers luxury adventure travel

Scott Hess

Truckee’s Bio Bio Expeditions has made a name for itself by offering rafting trips throughout California, South America and Africa. But the guides add something extra to each trip.

Focusing mainly on their trips down the Futaleufu River in Chile, Truckee-residents, best friends since high school, expert guides, world-class rafters and founders of Bio (pronounced BEE-OH BEE-OH) Laurence Alvarez-Roos and Marc Goddard have found a way to satisfy their craving for the outdoors – and they go one step further to make sure their guests find the same love of the outdoors.

Their trips incorporate beautiful scenery throughout the three different continents, high class meals on the river and many luxuries one would enjoy at home – or better. One of the extras: a few locals, as well as Alvarez-Roos’ girlfriend Nicole Bradford, provide massage therapy after a strenuous day of paddling.

On the Futaleufu and several other rivers, the groups will head out each day on a different section of the river and be shuttled back to the campsite for meals, massages and a hot tub. The camp has a full kitchen, making for exquisite meals while looking at exquisite scenery.

About the staff and the company

Alvarez-Roos, Goddard and Goddard’s wife, Damara, are the main guides, and they are joined by a host of guides once they arrive in South America. Alvarez-Roos and Marc are both world class rafters – Marc was on Team California and won two world championships and Alvarez-Roos was on the USA men’s rafting team.

Alvarez-Roos started rafting when he was 17 and Marc started after he moved to Colorado for college. They have led rafting trips around the world and started Bio Expeditions in 1992.

Damara is a registered nurse who works at Tahoe Forest Hospital when she’s not rafting or on another continent.

Bio is run out of their homes, where they do planning, scheduling, marketing and financing. When not on a river, Alvarez-Roos said he and Marc are in the office all day, making sure trips will go through smoothly.

What is included

The trips vary in amount of days, depending on what you want to do.

Many California trips last only a few days but the Futaleufu and other trips last seven days or more.

In addition, Bio incorporates horseback riding, hiking and a safari trip on their Africa expeditions, to incorporate more than just rafting for the customers.

“We try to include things travelers want to see, but also something different,” Alvarez-Roos said.

For example, their Peru trip down the Apurimac River, an upper tributary of the Amazon River, Bio incorporates a four-day hiking trip on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. In Africa, the group takes a safari, which is what many travelers would want, but they guides also take them down the Zambezi River, parts of which are home to crocodiles.

For the trips, everything is included except airfare to the country of choice.

Once there, all transportation, food, massages and side trips are provided.

When are they, where are they and how much?

Bio’s main season (and the guides’ favorite season) is in the winter, when the group heads down to South America for its summer.

The Futaleufu trips are in Patagonia, Chile, and run from late December to late March. Trips down the Futaleufu cost $2,600 per person.

Bio runs the Cal Salmon river and a couple kayaking schools in May and early June that cost a customer $350 to $400 each.

In late June through July, Bio heads to Peru, where it rafts down the Apurimac and Cotahuasi Rivers, and explores Machu Picchu. These trips last 10 days or more and cost $1,950 to $3,000.

The trips range in difficulty from Class 2 all the way up to sections of Class 5 rapids on some rivers.

All of Bio’s trip plans can be found on its Web site, http://www.bbxrafting.com, or by calling (800) 2-GO-RAFT.


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