Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Down The River

I haven't been rafting since I was willing to be seen in a bikini. When I lived at home, rafting down the Rogue river was a weekend activity, not really an event. The only planning it took was remembering the pump and getting refreshments in a cooler.

Now, when a girlfriend said she wanted to go rafting for her birthday, I wasn't even sure where to start. I have a raft and oars...somewhere. But, I don't know these rivers, and well, now I am old enough to be scared!

I scoured the internet and found Wet Planet Whitewater, where they handle everything. What a relief! We showed up and were outfitted with wetsuits (a first, clothing is minimal when rafting the Rogue in the summer), splash jackets, helmets (why do these adventures require helmets!), and booties. The jacket I was assigned smelled like mildew and sweat. GAG. But, the other gals had unsmelly ones, so I was just 'lucky'.

They sent us off to a white schoolbus and trucked us a few miles to the put-in point. They divided us into groups...and our foursome got matched up with part of a redneck themed bachelor party. Including a guy who reeked of beer and sweat. Who sat right in front of me. I could have smooched my friend Roxann when she suggested they trade seats!

Smells aside, it was amazing! Our guide filled us in on local history and ecology, most of which is probably true. He taught us all how to stay in the raft, which is the secret to enjoying any rafting trip. There were some great rapids. One time I almost got tossed (I used my odiferous companion to right myself), another time the guide had most of our crew sit on the front of the bull to 'ride the bull'. He told us after that particular rapid is also known as a nose douche.

We laughed and screamed and played with the waterproof camera. The birthday girl got a special treat -- because there were 7 on our raft instead of the normal 6, she got to ride 'princess'. No paddling! This means she was sandwiched between the two costumed rednecks up front, and tended to tip back when we hit a rapid, but the whole thing was just hilarious.

If all your friends jumped off a bridge, I suppose you would too. Actually, no mom, I wouldn't. But I did take pictures as my river divas took the plunge!

I'm having such a great time experiencing these adventures with my gals this year. I think we may need to keep the tradition going!

No comments: