Colorado River
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Rafting the Grand Canyon - Rapidly Approaching Bliss
It's sometime after Day 12 on our 21 day private Grand Canyon rafting trip. Only one private permit per day allowed on the river, so this is special. While not my first trip down, I'm already lost in time and space. There really is nothing in the universe like the GC. Rafting it is like taking a cruise through the geologic continuum. The rock formations tell the story of millions of years, layered in cake fashion, exposing all the calm and calamity in 224 miles of stata. This is a geology classroom and you become a student regardless of your major. We have 16 people in a handful of small, oar powered boats. Most outfitters run 30-40 foot motorized boats with more folks on one boat than in our group. We coexist in the canyon, occasionally getting to and giving up a large campsite in trade for ice to apply to gin and tonics. The wild rapids keep your attention while the hiking in the side canyons steals your heart. Places like Nankoweap, Olo, Tapeats, Matkatamiba, Havasu; all incredible canyons in their own right and some of the best hiking on Earth. All the rowing and walking gets folks hungry and thirsty. We pack our kitchens with the best menu that will last for three weeks. The bar is always open and if there isn't an upriver wind, happy hour starts early. Most folks can enjoy a sliver if this experience on a commercial trip. The canyon dories do two week floats that compare. Invest a chunk of time and money into a GC trip. You'll never be the same.
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