Monday, April 17, 2006

Rafting Trip - A travelogue

This is our travelogue of the exciting Rafting trip that we had . Here goes ...

0600 : It was a cold Friday morning ,Bini woke up . It was Vishu ( a festival for us ), My cousin Smitha and Nishant had joined us from Toronto yesterday . I looked outside the sky was clear. I felt happy . We quickly got up took bath and had light breakfast .We met Manish and Raasi in the parking lot and set off to Tapans House where Manish picked them up and we started our drive towards Welsboro .

0700 : The drive was smooth . It was a little overcast and then it started pouring in as the skies opened up . We all had that look on our faces . Was Rupa right ? Were we stupid enough to set off. Who will have the last laugh ? But as we drove on and reached Pinecreek outfitters the rain tricked down to drizzle.

0800 : Well any doubts we had about the weather and chill quickly vanished as we put on the wetsuits that were provided to us and in fact I was feeling a little hot inside the dress even though I knew that the temperature outside was only 40F or something

0830 : We had a quick orientation by the rafting lead , There were 40 to 50 rafters and he quickly told us all about steering and paddling and what not to do . It followed some routing questions like what do I do if I fall into water? What if I don't know how to swim ? (This was my cousin she had no idea they were going for rafting . They had the pedal boating impression in their mind ! ) .The guide told us to put the bossy and fussy people in charge of rudder at the back and not to paddle . This made sense because you don't want them in the front anyway ! . It was quickly decided to put me and Tapan as navigation as we went in two rafts

0900: we started out in our rafts and we quickly discovered that it was not as easy as it looks , everyone was trying to paddle or rudder at the same time and the raft was going in little circles but still making progress because of the current . We were the last ones at this stage .

1000: We saw some eagles and we also saw some eagles nest on the way . By now we had got the hang of it . But after a few minutes we came across a big rapid and we got stuck in the rock . We did freak out for sometime My cousin was panicking a little but the two guys in kayaks who were guides came and told us as to how to find the stuck portion and transfer the weight to one side. This included me getting on top of the rock pushing the raft and jumping in.

1100 :We went through more rapids . My cousins husband nearly fell out of the raft and we both caught him in time. That was a scary moment there . My cousin sister was screaming for the next half hour but calmed down later. Soon we were steering and controlling the raft like pros. The sun had come out and the weather improved , it was drizzling all this time I guess But none of us really noticed the light drizzle we were too busy guiding and peddling and I was really feeling hot inside the suits. They were really skin tight.

1200 : We saw some more eagles and some ducks and more rapids. Everyone was looking forward to the lunch break . We were tired arms were paining a little I guess but we were totally having fun . We had passed Devils Run and split rock some higher class rapids. We had rafter about 10 miles now.

1300 : We had now stopped for lunch and everyone had some much deserved rest and the sandwich and jams and jellies never tasted so good. We realized we were all so exhausted. Raasi had made some excellent roti and sabji which we shared along with tons of snacks I guess.

1330: Then we spent some time near the burning wood warming our hands. water had got into the gloves and they were a tad cold.

1400 : Now that we had lunch and were back they gave us water guns and we started playing with them a lot shooting folks with water jets . It went pretty smooth after lunch for next one hour we were in calmer waters .

1500 :We had more rapids coming at us now but by now we knew how to look far down and guide the raft well in advance .

we also noticed that when rocks are higher the water is splashy in those places and we also learned how to use the streams force to guide the raft faster and now it was more guiding and less paddling

1530 : we were getting exhausted and my arms had also starting to throb . We had rafted about 17 miles by now . We soon reached Blackwell which was our final stop . We all climbed into awaiting vans ; They were heated and me and some of us started sleeping in the van itself.

1600 : We reached back at the base camp after 40 minutes . We quickly got into our regular clothes the changing rooms were heated and I was not complaining about the heat now . We started our ride back to corning and on the way we were discussing the rafting events all the time.

1800: We reached home . We still had not stopped talking about the trip . It was a memorable and thrilling trip .It was scary and exhausting but we had fun .It was a life changing experience one thing for sure is what Nish told I forgot all my stress at work and feel so good. A hot tub and some light dinner and soup we were all tucked in bed . As our dear friend Tapan says what doesn't kill you makes you stronger .. and we all agree !

All in all it was an adventure ; that none of us would forget in a lifetime. I have not intentionally mentioned the rapids and stuff in detail as everone should go and do this thing and it so so beyond words. The adrenalin rush feeling you get when you are headed towards a rock and your raft is spinning and you try to push your raft through nearly grazing the rock and you have the little grin on your face for a moment; before the next rock comes along. It is just an awesome experience and I will definitely do it again maybe a more higher class of rapids this time and that is me signing off..

1 comment:

Sanoop said...

Wow!!! looks like you guys had a jolly good time... This article makes me also want to go for a trip like this... but i donno whether I'll be able to pull it off, kinda scared of water...... :-)