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The Grandest of Trips PDF Print E-mail
Written by Linda Johnson   
Friday, 02 October 2009 08:53

Tales from the Grand Canyon rafting trip of 8/30-9/4/09

DAY 1: House Rock Rapids

We were approaching what Shad called our biggest rapid of the day. Earlier we ran Soap Creek rapid with a drop of 16 feet. But since it was a longer rapid, it was only rated a 5-6 (on a scale of 1-10). It was a fun ride and it made me realize that I was meant to be on the pontoons.

House Rock was “only” a 9-foot drop but over a shorter distance and with rocks to maneuver around. It was rated 7. We stopped up river for last minute reminders from Shad. Hold tight with both hands. First row on the pontoon: “suck rubber”. Second and third row: “kiss the life jacket of the person in front of you”. Bench seat: “knees up”. Cameras were put away. Water bottles were secured. We watched as the monster of House Rock opened its mouth and swallowed our lead raft. They had disappeared. We started our approach. As we entered, I peered into the mouth of this monster, a hole like I had never seen and we were headed straight down into it. As the pontoons hit the bottom of the hole and were thrown straight up into the air with the wave that followed, we got the true meaning of “suck rubber”. As the lower half of our bodies were straddling pontoons they were now pointing straight up into the air, our heads were tucked in an effort to stay centered. What a ride!! But it wasn’t over. Another glance ahead, another hole, a deeper hole, down we go again, hitting another wave, sucking rubber, seeing nothing but water. It calms a little, and there are a few more bumps to ride. We check around. Everyone is still in the boat with all their body parts. In the calm water ahead is our lead raft. High fives around the pontoons, cheers to Justin for the magnificent ride.

We set up camp at House Rock where the roar of the rapids never stopped, constantly reminding me of the most exciting rafting I had ever done and it was only Day 1, we had only done 17 miles of the 180 we had to do, and we had yet to see an 8, 9 or 10.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 22 February 2017 09:47
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