|MC, said friend|
Perhaps the smarter choice would have been to say thanks, but no thanks. I'll never know since I quickly punched the send button with a YES in reply.
All the borrowed gear became owned gear and at least a day per week was spent at the local whitewater park, floating a river, or rolling in a lake. With the increase in skill and confidence came more challenging waterways.
This summer's experiences on water recently peaked when that same friend who put me in a packraft offered to secure a permit to float Westwater Canyon, a classic 17 mile Class IV stretch, on the Colorado River. Our group consisted of 8 guys, all sporting 6lb packrafts from Alpacka.
7 miles of flat water floating led us into the 3 mile stretch where the canyon pinches down and the rapids begin. Though the rapids don't require too much in the way of eddy hopping or tricky maneuvering, they do consist of large wave trains and munchy holes.
It was read and run. A few of us ran everything clean on sight and a few had some nice swims. By the end of the day, those who hadn't swam on the first go, hiked the boats back above a rapid looking to find the biggest waves and deepest holes. We all swam eventually.
The passing of a flask full of Mezcal, bantering about gear, and smiles had the leisurely 7 mile paddle to the take out over too soon.
|Not trying to surf the hole...|
|Find the face in the rock|