Our staff is our strength, meet the best Maine whitewater rafting guides in the industry.
When guests join us for one of our wonderful Maine whitewater rafting trips, they expect a safe, small, personalized trip. Providing an excellent rafting adventure falls on the shoulders of our amazing professional guide staff. Every one of our employees is a Level II Maine whitewater rafting guide. They know the business from both sides of the trip, the river and support.
Certified by the state of Maine whitewater rafting commission, and having held their licenses for at least three years, Penobscot Adventures recognizes their staff as the backbone of the business. They are the key to our great safety rating, and incredible outdoor adventures.
Maureen McDonald, Owner/Operator
Drawn into white water by Dan during college, Maureen worked at several rafting companies. After getting employee of the year for Northern Outdoors, Maureen became a river guide for Magic Falls Rafting then started Penobscot Adventures with Dan. She hasn’t guided since her daughters were born despite the staff’s best efforts.
Daniel McDonald, Owner/Operator
Dan loves to kayak and drive bus. He started Penobscot Adventures with Maureen and Bob Lindblom in tow. Together that ran P.A. for the first year with just the help of rent a guides. After the first year we picked up more staff and things got real. Now Dan teaches in the winter and leaves the daily operations to Tyler and the finest staff of guides in the industry.
Tyler joined the company 8 years ago when his training class was cancelled by another company. He’s been with us ever since, bringing great ideas and management skills to Penobscot Adventure’s daily operations. He may not be around as much because he’s starting his own business, but we’ll get him on the river as much as possible.
Sebastian “Sea Bass” Jackson
Sebastian Jackson trained with Tyler and has been with us full-time ever since. During that time he has also earned 2 Masters degrees and accepted a lecturing job at the University of Maine in Farmington. He’s currently earning a Doctorate at Harvard , but he can’t fool us though, his first love is still rafting. I bet he will be up for all the river time he can get.
“Special” Will Burgess
Will has been rafting with us since he was 14! As soon as he turned 18 he trained with us and has worked full-time every summer since then. He’s currently getting ready to graduate from UMass Amherst with a degree in sustainable business models. His specialty is our river boarding trips and he was the best reviewed rafting guide in 2013 and 2015.
Dan “Butterfield” Bernard
“Butterfield” got his nickname from my favorite ice cream shop in Dover-Foxcroft, Maine. He rafted with us a few times and decided to give training a try. An engineer by trade he has a touch for trailers, equipment, and whitewater. Dan usually only comes up on the weekends, but has a great knack for rafting Class V whitewater.
“Little Joe” Balzanelli
“Little” Joe trained with us last year. A whitewater kayaker and photographer he’s a great addition to the team. He’s addicted to the whitewater and will never be able to leave the river life. “Little” Joe is a sail boat Captain when he’s not on the river or working his real job as a sail maker.
Brian “The Badger” Blancoe
Brian is an electrical engineer, Kung Fu instructor, and excellent raft guide. He has a wealth of life knowledge and a great touch with equipment. His stories keep the staff laughing, and his skill on the river is excellent. He’s one of our most trusted employees, always there for us when we need him to hit the river.
Ben “The JabberWocky” Koehler
This kid is great. Rarely do you find a person that loves whitewater as much as Ben Koehler. He trained with another rafting company in the Forks, Maine before coming to the dark side on the Penobscot River. I don’t know if it’s a good thing, but he is the best whitewater swimmer I’ve ever seen. He has even SCUBA’ed sections of the Kennebec river gorge. I have never heard of anyone else hammering the whitewater with Scuba Gear.
Bob is Penobscot Adventures longest employee. He worked for Magic Falls Rafting’s Penobscot river operation before Dan and Maureen bought the business. He and Dan kayak together and play basketball every Sunday night. Bob’s not a full time employee anymore, but he is one of the best guides on the river when he’s there.
“Big Joe” Paleologos
“Big Joe” trained with his lifelong friend Will Burgess. He’s a great guide with amazing boating skills and personality to spare. Joe is an engineer working in Boston. Hopefully he can make it up a bunch this summer.
“Albie” Frawley is one of longest continual employees. He’s a carpenter by trade during the week, but comes up almost every weekend to raft the West Branch with us.
“Tiny” Joe Seefried
Our “Tiniest” of Joes has a big part in our hearts and on our team! His love for the river has expanded beyond rafting and is now quite a good kayaker!
Penobscot Adventures is super grateful to have Nate come back to us this, our 15th season. He trained with us last year and did a remarkable job. A solid attribute to our PA family, he made quite a name for him self in our industry with his granola bar story!
Mi corazon esta con….Sawyer! As our second bilingual guide, he provides some added flavor and pizazz to our adventures on the river. This guide came to us last year from Honduras, and we are lucky to have back with us again this year! Que divertdo!
Surpisingly the strongest on our crew. (No really, ask him how many muscle-ups he can do). Willis started as a guide with our company and pivoted to our expert photographer and ultimate overseer of trip support. Everyone looks like river-heros when Willis is working!
3rd year guide Whitney is always working on her craft. She kayaks, shoots awesome pictures, and takes her job very seriously. She’s great to have around.
From Pennsylvania, Logan is an avid kayaker, heavily involved in the University of Maine Outing Club, and popular raft guide. He joined our team team last year and was one of the first back this spring, ready to rock.