Grand Canyon Adventure trip

In September 2018, Team River Runner guided 5 well trained blind veterans in their own kayaks on an epic whitewater run down the mighty Colorado River in the Grand Canyon! TRR had previously guided Lonnie Bedwell down these same rapids in 2013 making him the first blind kayaker to successfully paddle all 226 miles.  Lonnie coordinated the 2018 adventure, forming a team of 12 sighted veterans and 4 TRR volunteers as the guides. Lonnie had dreamed since his 2013 historic feat to be able to share this life changing experience with his fellow veterans. Take the time to review the journey, along with some videos of one of TRR’s proudest accomplishments.  

Meet the Outtasight Paddlers!

In the months leading up the the trip, this group of paddlers will be training hard in the necessary skills to make a successful Grand Canyon run. Click on the profiles below to learn more about the paddlers and the progress they are making at each of our clinics!

Outtasight Guides!

These veterans and volunteers will be the eyes for our blind and visually impaired paddlers. They guide the Outtasight paddlers by voice and are training alongside them!

Seth Dahl

Eric Guzman

Safety Boaters

In The News

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Mike Plourde

Timmy O'Neill

The Action

Our Outtasight Clinics have been around since 2014 and we’ve been lucky enough to have some amazing footage shot of our training. Check out this video that Seth Dahl created this year about our Vision team!

“Paddling the Grand Canyon with TRR was such a powerful moment to know, this is possible. To know that I don’t have to be defined by this box that people put me in as a blind person. I can dream beyond this box. It just truly makes you believe in yourself and the power of what you can do.”

Lonnie Bedwell

Thank you to our sponsors!

Vanessa Jones

Committe Co-Chair

Vanessa A. Jones is a dynamic force dedicated to fostering
inclusivity, encouraging discussion, and promoting a culture of
belonging in the outdoor sports community. Hailing from
Washington, DC, she brings a wealth of diverse experiences and
perspectives to her endeavors.
As a US Army veteran and ordained Chaplain with a focus on
seniors and caretakers, Vanessa is deeply committed to serving
others. Her work as a patient-caretaker advocate reflects her
passion for supporting vulnerable populations and ensuring their
voices are heard.
Currently, Vanessa is employed by a resettlement agency, where
she confronts challenges head-on with resilience and
compassion. As a single, Black woman veteran, she embraces
the unique hurdles she faces, viewing them as opportunities for
growth and empowerment.
In her downtime, she wears many hats, including that of a
missionary, spreading hope and positivity wherever she goes.
Weekends are spent paddling, immersing herself in West African
dance and finding solace and joy in nature’s embrace.
Vanessa is committed to equitable principles, ensuring that
everyone’s opinions are valued and heard. Through her
unwavering dedication and inclusive leadership, Vanessa is
paving the way for a more equitable and diverse outdoor sports