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Day 12 – Rafting the Arkansas River!

Today we woke up at 7:30 and it was definitely not the fastest morning we’ve had on the trip, but we did our best and got moving and grooving eventually. For breakfast cook crew served us fruit, cereal, and yogurt. After breakfast, we got ready for a big rapid filled day of whitewater rafting on the Arkansas River just outside our campsite at the Rocky Mountain Outdoor Center. Our guides Beck and Joey did a great job on teaching us safety and paddle technique; the Rafting Raccoons boat consisted of Max, Mia, Peri, Westin, Coen, and Izzy, while the Paddling Platypi boat has Leah, Sally, Darly, Charlie, Simon, and myself (Addison). The rafting was so much fun, we hit a ton of class 3’s, some more difficult than others, and a few class 4’s as well! At our lunch spot Simon, Coen, Izzy, and Peri had the opportunity to jump off a rock into a deep section of river and swim to shore while the guides watched over them. After some Caesar salad wraps for lunch, we continued on the river heading for our first class 4 rapid, we got out of our boats for a short walk to scope out a specific section of river and make a game plan for how we wanted to raft it. All of our boats made it through without flipping, and afterwards we had a huge splashing war. Our rafting trip ended and we got out at the takeout point and took a van ride back to our campsite. The wind had moved around some of our tents and loose items while we were away, it looked pretty disheveled from the hurricane force winds which seem to be common in this part of Colorado. One of our tents’ poles snapped from the wind, so we replaced it quickly with our backup set. We spent some time in Buena Vista getting ice cream and window shopping – Charlie got a sick golden leaf chain at a thrift shop. We headed back to camp and Peri, Coen and I started on our dinner of delicious street tacos while Izzy and Darly worked on flipping a water bottle (no success after 2 hours of attempts.) We cleaned up after dinner, had a lovely evening circle, and got ready to roast some marshmallows over the fire.

The End – Addison

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