Idaho: Rafting on the Salmon River

Hiking up the canyon
After looking through this blog again, I realized it's basically been a full year since I've done any trips. Between starting a new job, trying to maintain a long distance relationship, and trying to adapt to life in Seattle, I haven't really "travelled". I've done lots of mini trips here and there in Seattle (which, for the record, is a fantastic city to do mini trips out of!). Kind of out of nowhere and after a rec from a white water rafting guide in Idaho, I decided that I needed a real vacation - white water rafting for 6 days on the Salmon River :D

I decided to go by myself on this trip - I'd be the random unmarried woman in her late twenties who "just felt like she'd go rafting for 6 days". It's amazing how I match that description completely, but am not the person that comes to mind, haha! I went through the Momentum Rafting Company and we did the Middle Salmon (not to be confused with the Middle Fork Salmon, and much more intense white water rafting experience). We did 6 nights on the river, sleeping in tents (that were luxuriously set up for us... I'm not used to being spoiled!), excellent meals (better than what I eat at home), and spent the days rafting, hiking, exploring and just enjoying life without cell phone reception.

Typical view on a lunch break :) 

 I really loved the other people on the trip - Mike and Glenn, friends who lived very, very far apart and wanted to have a friend-reunion doing something awesome and relaxing. Nancy and Laurie with their daughters Lilia and Emma (damn teenagers!) who became my adopted family on the trip (I was the eldest).

All smiles here 
Unlike a lot of my other trips, I don't think of this one in terms of days and events. Instead, we hiked out of the canyon and climbed up to a grassy knoll with some trees and hung out for a bit or the natural hot spring excursion. We all spent lots of time lounging on the beach reading in the sun (or shade!). We played games at night, with Egyptian Ratscrew entering epic proportions. Lilia and I played volleyball for hours and could have kept going! At one point Lilia, Emma, and I floated through rapids, laughing and trying to swim to each other, fighting the current. Glenn and Mike threw forks at each other at a 20 pace distance until they hit each other. In my bravest moment, I slept outside my tent by myself, hearing the river hit the shore at night and waking up periodically to a full milky way. It was amazing.

Everyone in the natural hot tub
 The rapids (several class 4's at high water!) we went through on the 80 mile stretch of river we did were fun and definitely a highlight, but the people I met on this trip and bonded with really made the experience nothing short of wonderful. Coming back to reality with cell phones and internet was jarring - suddenly the comraderie was dampened and our attention was back on the little portal to our friends and family back home. From this experience, I am more conscious of how much I use my phone and the constant 'need' to check it. We all don't need to check it all the time. Even with work stuff, once a day would probably be sufficient.

So go rafting, be outside, turn off your phone. Be happy :)

This is what I will always think of when remembering this trip... 

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