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Upset Rapids


After lunch, two boats, Sam's and Charly's boats, went down to the top of the Upset Rapids. Upset Rapids is a large rapid located at mile 150, with a rocky beach along the side of it, perfect for taking pictures. I went along in Charly's boat with Adam and Greg. At the top of the rapids, we hopped out, walked down to the middle of hte beach at the middle of the rapid, cameras in hand. We were walking down to photograph the other four boats, the kayaks, the canoe and one ducky.

As we walked out along the rocks, I had to wonder what I was doing out there. Actually, I was wondering WTF I was doing out there. I don't know why I went down. I have this teeny tiny handheld camera. Everyone else had these amazing SLRs with massive lenses, or an HD camcorder.

Last night, at dinner, when Tracy was telling what to expect today, she asked for volunteers to take pictures. No one, and I mean no one, volunteered. I thought, "huh?" and raised my hand. If no one else is going, I want to go. I didn't realize that Sam and Charly and Matt and Pat and Adam and Greg all had great cameras were going to use them. I felt like the biggest moron out there. Yeah, I so way didn't need to be there.

I took a few pictures, none being a money shot. I walked back, grabbing a neat yellow stone on my way, only to find out that Greg was going to be rowing the boat through the rapids. I was quite unhappy about this, not realizing at the time Greg's experience is good as is his paddling strength, but we made it through just fine, my standing in the back. We stalled on the third wave in the wave train: the wave had completely blasted all four of us in the boat, including me, as I ducked behind Greg to no success.

As we came out of the rapids, I turned to the left to see Matt's boat at the top of the eddy, taking pictures of our run through the rapids. Great. I probably had my mouth open.

We floated along the river for a while, passing a few boats here and there. Our boat stopped (and only charly's boat) at a camp site that was all stone shelves with a small sprinkle of water in a small waterfall at the top of the stones. Each of us went to rinse in the fall, the water being clear and warm.

When I was in the small waterfall, Kris' boat passed under me, so I called out to him, "You're jealous!" I later found out I called out WAY too loudly. Sigh.

The rest of the float down to camp wholy sucked. Adam, Charly and Greg had conversations too soft for me to hear, so I gave up and just took pictures. We later picked up Michael, whose neck was hurting.

At one point, Greg commented that groups usually take the stone campsite above where we rinsed, if it's available. If the campsite we're going to tonight is taken by another group, subsequent options are way limited and we risk missing Havasu Falls (being the azure ponts I missed 10 years ago).

Charly and Greg talked about the hike to Havasu Falls, its being 2-3 hours to the falls, and how the group is going tomorrow. For the record, I am so way NOT going past the azure lakes.

This afternoon sucked. I plan on staying out of Charly's boat, even though he has TONS of fascinating stories to tell, having been rafting down the Canyon for years, if he's talking in the direction away from me and I can't hear them.


Update: I showed Andy and Kris the photos I took. They loved them!

Kris told me his story of the paddle boat's trip through Upset Falls. Just before heading down, Andy turned to Kris to remind him, "We're on the right side of the boat. Remember that." In the rapids, Kent (the paddle boat guide) specified "Left back!" and Andy started paddling backward. The second time Andy paddled backward on the left call, Kris called out, "Andy! We're on the RIGHT SIDE!"