Relatives of the man who died after the raft he was in capsized near the Harvie Passage say he was trying to save one of his friends when he failed to make it to shore.

Brad Kuhl was in a raft with three others Monday when it flipped in the class three rapids.

Three others made it safely to shore. Kuhl was pulled from the water a short time later near the fish hatchery.

He was taken to hospital where he later died.

Kuhl’s nephew, Nick Kuhl, said he was told his uncle only saw two of his friends make it to shore and had turned back to make sure everyone was safe.

"Brad was a selfless and deeply caring man and I believe that was pretty much shown in his final moments being that he turned around because he couldn’t see the fourth person," Kuhl said.

Warning issued

The accident happened after the group tried to raft down the rapids two previous times.

On one of the occasions when they were walking the raft back up the river to try the trip again, Kuhl said the group was warned the Bow River was unsafe.

"I can confirm that they were stopped and were allowed to proceed," Kuhl said.

Kuhl said he is left wondering why the group was allowed to try the trip again if conditions were so unsafe.

"Obviously it’s a tragic enough situation as it is, but not knowing the full facts surrounding his death at this point is definitely adding an extra element to our tragic loss to our family," he said.

Kuhl adds his uncle was an experienced rafter and outdoorsman.