Saturday rolled around and I was fine, bright-eyed and bushy-browed. That was good, because we had reservations to go rafting on the Poudre. Rafting was awesome as always. The water level was close to four feet (five feet is a little high), and despite the fact that it rained, the wet suits and splash jackets kept us as dry as can be expected. We did 12 miles of class IV and III rapids, and to continue my life-long streak, I stayed in the boat. We only had one casualty.
I vowed that I would not be put in the front (I have never rafted anywhere but the front and wanted a new perspective). The guy in front of me, in sales for HP, who talked WAY more than he listened, was not paying attention and a wave blindsided him as we were taking the longest class IV on the trip, Pine View falls. He almost totally flipped out of the boat. I say almost, because while his head was submerged completely, I stubborn foot stayed caught in the foot cup. His friend reached over and dislodged his foot (later I heard the victim accuse his friend of “hanging onto” his leg), and the guy bubbled up to the water just in time to spit out a mouthfull of Giardia lamblia, before he was sucked under a rock in a vicious undertow and then ejected, gasping and crying. He was freaked. Everyone called him the swimmer the rest of the trip and I’m sure he was thinking that what he just went through in no way resembled anything approaching swimming. So the moral when the river is running high and danger is increased: Don’t be in Sales.
I was too cheap to pay the $80 dollars they wanted for digital prints, but I think I rendered a pretty faithful picture of what went on. Marshall, with the curly locks, is up front. Elissa’s helmet (a Youth Small) is too big and is completely enveloping her head while she clutches at my back. Our guide is screaming obscenities, and my head is huge. HP crew not pictured.
Afterward, they had free pizza and beer at the office! Thanks, Mountain Whitewater Descents!