Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Floatin' Down The Gunny

Tuesday was the day reserved for the activities that took all day.  Granddad took off on the 30-mile bike trip while the rest of us went on a float down the Gunnison River. 

We got up early for breakfast and packed lunches and hopped in the camp's vans for what was undoubtedly the most scary part of the trip - the drive to Gunnison.  The road was pretty curvy, with lots of changes in elevation, but the driver was familiar with the road - which meant they took it a lot faster than we would have!  Will and Carissa were in the front row in their car seats with Brad, but the rest of us were in the last two rows, which made it seem even wilder.  We got to Gunnison, got outfitted with life jackets and then got back into the van for a (thankfully!) short ride to our put-in point - an Italian restaurant!

Of course, I didn't bring my camera on the trip, but the outfitter had a photographer that was ahead of us as strategic points on the river.  We did bring a small point and shoot, but we didn't get it out except when we stopped for a break. 

Here we are getting ready - our family:

And our extended family!

We started out with Jerry, the girls, Terri and I in one boat, and Amy's family in another boat, but Will thought he would rather be with his cousins, so he ended up coming with us, and Carissa joined us after the first rest stop.  The kids opted not to paddle at first so they could just enjoy the ride:

We were in the lead boat, so we got into the boat and into the river first and made it past the first "rapid" with no problem!

With the drought the river was very low, so the water wasn't moving very fast.  There was one place that had been set up by some type of parks and recreation department to create some rapids, consisting of three successive drops.  I think we were so busy mugging for the camera, we just popped right over them:

But looking at the photos, I think the kids expressions are priceless:

They really enjoyed the "rapids" and were ready to tackle the more vigorous "white water" rafting trip, but you have to weigh 100 pounds for that one, and the girls are still substantially under that.  Maybe in a few years they'll be physically ready.

We had a good time - saw several types of wildlife, and the kids enjoyed dipping their toes in the water, which was about 48 degrees.  They kept saying how much they would love to jump in, until we scooped out a cup of water and poured it over their heads - then they rethought the whole jumping in strategy!  At one point the river ran alongside a golf course - just for a half of a hole or so, but for miles after that we saw golf balls on the bottom of the river, so many that the girls couldn't keep count. 

After a late lunch we headed back over the mountains back to Redcloud, where the kids went on a (fire-free) cookout while the adults had a "date night".  It was a very full day, and I don't think anyone had trouble sleeping that night! 

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