Grand, Grand, Canyon
I was one of a group of 8. We called ourselves the Antarctic Eight as we had met in March 2016 on a small ship following Ernest Shackleton's 1914/5 route in Antarctica. I knew about rough water and weather, wearing waterproof clothes and getting wet.
Our friend from Flagstaff, AZ, suggested we run the Colorado River. Amazing colourful landscapes as the river wound round the tall canyon walls, the piece of drifting along, until RD described what was coming next.......One rapid was so deep that we on the front, despite sucking rubber (heads down on the pontoons) fell in a heap on top of each other. Everyone was covered in cold water. Two people fell off and were quickly helped back on. That's why we wore life jackets and laughed a lot. However we dried out quickly with the hot sun on us, this August 2017.
RD entertained us with the history and geography of the Grand Canyon and led local walks when we moored. The hardest part was carrying tents, stretchers, chairs, own gear and all kitchen equipment and food up sandy riverbanks for the nightly camp.
Sand in everything. Teeth, toes and hair. The fast flowing Colorado River lulled us to sleep under fab evening skies of bright stars and planes flying across the country.
Two rafts of 14 people each, mainly US, English, Swiss and Aussie. Helicopter ride out after 6 days to Bar 10 Ranch for hot showers and lunch. Then a small plane flight back to Marble Canyon with great views of where we'd traveled.
Thanks millions to leaders Stephen, RD, Travis and Emily for a fantastic adventure in an amazing part of the world.