6 & 7 Day Grand Canyon Vacation – Oh My God
When I was 18 years old I worked at the Bright Angel Lodge at the Grand Canyon. I walked down to Phantom Ranch at the bottom of the canyon and promised myself that one day I would return and ride a raft down the river.
That someday came last week when my husband and I and my friend Brenda went on the 6 day river rafting trip with Western through the Grand Canyon. It was in celebration of my 60th birthday and the trip was even better than I had imagined.
I would advise everyone to do as much as they want to or can on the trip. The hikes were amazing, including Native American flute music being played by one of the guides in the amazing slot canyon we walked through. Swimming under waterfalls, climbing up rock walls to the granaries, going down the aquamarine rapids at the Little Colorado River in a lifejacket, swimming in blue pools at Havasau, and being taken out of the canyon in a helicopter were only some of the highlights. Riding in the front of the boat through huge rapids was a highlight for me, but I especially liked the fact that nobody was pressured to do anything they didn't want to and so sitting out of harms way in the back was an option that others enjoyed. I personally sat in every seat I could on the raft to experience it all.
I have never camped with 32 people and was concerned. I enjoy my solitude. It was, however, possible to break away and find some time for yourself to enjoy the spiritual and never ending beauty of the canyon.
We had a very diverse group of people from the very fundamental Christians to old time hippies and everyone was sensitive to each others beliefs and needs and got along splendily. I learned a lot from the people on the trip. From the father who came alone with his two teenage sons to the father who had dreamed about the trip for 30 years and brought his wife and grown children, we all experienced the Grand Canyon in our own way and benefited from each other.
I can't say enough good stuff about our Western River guides, Ronnie(Veronica) Jeff, Corey and Shad. They were thoroughly professional, funny, hardworking, knowledgeable, and respectful of the canyon and its many facets. Ronnie and Jeff as a wife-husband team showed us all what a true partnership in marriage can be like. I applaud the way they treated one another. One of the special moments on the trip was when Ronnie played her guitar and sang a song to Jeff. It was interesting and refreshing to note that Ronnie was the captain of the expedition and none of the males had any problem with this. They all worked together to make the Grand Canyon whitewater rafting trip a fantastic experience, from the delicious meals they prepared to the never ending patience and happiness they shared with us.
They worked from sunup to past sundown and more than deserved the suggested tip- you will be thankful if you brought it and sorry if you didn't. They even guided us through the bathroom experience which was not my favorite but by the end we were all able to SMILE at each other. You will have to go on the trip to find out what that means.
Be sure and take suggested items, especially rain gear and extra camera batteries. The water is COLD no matter what the temp. outside is.
Our battery on our camera ran out the second day but our raftmates kindly said they would share photos.
Even if I had not one photo the experience will be forever etched on the emulsion sheets of my mind and heart. It was as so many have said befor me-The trip of a lifetime.
Lori - Mariposa
Arizona - Grand Canyon Rafting 6 & 7 Day