My girlfriend and I will be packrafting next month in Guatemala and Belize and we’re trying to figure out whether we should be concerned about crocodiles potentially munching on our packrafts and/or us.

The impression we’ve gotten is that we won’t have any problems in Class I+ water or above, but some of our prospective routes may involve slow and languid river deltas, which are more likely to be croc habitat.

We’re both Alaskans and have no idea whether this should be cause for concern or not. Does anyone have any thoughts on the matter?

Tom Moran
Fairbanks, AK

You’d better make sure that you look carefully at Sheri’s youtube vid about repairing the bear munched boat…presumably crocs do similarly!

There are no crocodiles in Central America, only alligators. Those are not aggressive like their counterparts in Afric and Asia-Pacific.

I closely experienced the American Alligator in the Okefenokee Swamp in Georgia and traveled by boat in Panama. Nop worries.


Actually, American alligators are found only in the Southeast US (another species in China). There are several species of crocodiles in Central America.

I was there years ago and while on a boat with a local we saw a croc about 5 feet long. He suggested I swim with it and assured me I’d be fine . So I jumped in. The croc quickly disappeared. I hope to PR in Central America and would be vigalant but not overly concerned about crocs.

That said, maybe more folks will chime in on my Needle and Thread post… :slight_smile:

I recall staying in a town called El Estor in Guatemala. There was a large lake there with a very biologically rich delta area. I’d love to go back there.


I spent a few week in Belize a few months back sailing down the coast and back. There are several areas that they say not to swim in as Crocs inhabit those offshore areas. If there are crocs offshore then the rivers must be full of them.

Having spent a bit of time in Northern Australia, I have learnt that crocs are top order predators and will have a go a boat, outboards, bite the heads of drinking kangaroos, canoes. people etc, there are a few croc attacks/ fatalities per year in Australia (usually Alaskan tourists with pack rafts :smiley:). I have a great respect for crocs and have seen them up to 6 meters long. I have seen one that was estimated at 4 to 5 meters long with a 400lb Dugong in its mouth, Packrafts look a bit like Dugongs…


Never been to Guatemala, but I’ve had my alpacka in with alligators many a time at Kisatchie Bayou, the Sabine River, and Whiskey Chitto creek down here in the wretched state of louisiana. (I think I’m still the only packrafter in louisiana). Every time they see me they panic and attempt to swim away as fast as possible. Once the Sabine one went under the llama and I felt the back bump, but he still wasn’t interested. Bottom line…only drunks and idiots get attacked by alligators…and even these only rarely.

Freshwater Crocs in Oz behaved similarly to PatriotBliss’ account of LA alligators.

I paddled past dozens on the Ord River in the Eastern Kimberly of Western Australia and a handful in Kakadu, some quite long like 8 feet or so, even chased one. They were more interested in the fruit bats that fell in. One coughed up a dead bat to get away from me faster.

Still, big reptiles always make a guy and especially some gals nervous.

“Drunks and idiots” encompassed 98% of the Australian population, that would explain the number of croc attacks over the years though :smiley:

As far as advice regarding crocodiles, that I have heard over a number of years, from an Australian, is available on this link…

In case anyone was wondering … we only ended up encountering one baby croc when packrafting on the trip, and as soon as it spotted us it fled in terror. But we didn’t end up rafting any river deltas, which is where they’re apparently most prevalent.
Tom Moran

When exploring the forum i got Crocodiles which remember me of “Steve Irvin”" the crocodile hunter. Thanks for the stuff