Desert Course - A heavily irrigated course found in the desert. These are popular in the Middle East, Australia and the USA. These do raise environmental concerns though - are they an oasis in the desert, or a waste of water?
Sand Course - Again found in the desert and in areas of low rainfall but they are not heavily irrigated.
Browns Course - Similar to sand courses but rather more technical with layers of gravel and tar under the sand to give firmness and support. The worlds highest golf course is a 9 hole browns course in Leh maintained by Indian army.
Snow Course - A recent invention, played with brightly coloured balls.
Is it a thrilling leisure activity or a dangerous sport? It is probably a combination of the two. Since it began in the 1970 it has certainly become a lot safer with legislated safety measures, better qualified operators and much improved equipment. In the past rivers have been known to swallowed up whole expeditions. Nowadays the overall risk, when using experienced operators, is considered as low. It is also now a competitive sport with international and world championship events. This competitive element of rafting began in the mid 90's.