Hi everyone, I’m Brendan, today’s group leader!
Our day started after a great night’s sleep with the flowing of the river that we would soon be rafting down. We all had a quick and efficient dismantling of our tents and had packed all of our stuff the night before into trash bags except for what we needed to sleep. The lingering grogginess was easily shaken off after a delicious breakfast prepared by the cook crew of the day; Vic, Bryan, Suela, and Ember. Once we packed our stuff into the U-Haul trailer and went for a brief drive to our next checkpoint where we met Dawson, Lily, and Theo, our raft guides who would take us through the rapids for the next three days. We stuffed our trash bags into dry bags to keep our belongings safe for the rough ride ahead and our guides threw them up into rafts stacked in a trailer behind a retired school bus. Then we set off for the river, driving through beautiful grassy desert mountains. Once we arrived our guide Lily prepared us with a safety overview and once our life jackets were tightened until it was hard to breathe (which means it’s safe) we finally got into the rafts. The guides taught and drilled us on commands of when and how to paddle as to ensure a safe journey down the river, and made sure that we earned our meals. As our rafts inevitably drifted together, a splash battle was started between the two boats, which evolved into a battle where Jacob and Bryan of the “Willy” were attacked by Victor and Alex of the “SS Warsh.” The battle took them all out of the boat and into the water (The water was calm in those parts though, and Matreiya, Suela, and Allie all got a chance to jump out and float in the water for a bit). We stopped for lunch, but in our way was a large snake, who must have thought it was a good spot for lunch too. Unfortunately, he couldn’t eat with us, because anything could enjoy the sandwiches, chips, crackers, and watermelon the guides put out. For the parents at home, it may not sound like the best thing ever, but after rafting in the sun for an hour or two it hit the spot just right. We got back in our boats and our guides and Brett and Casey told riddles that made our brains knot, and Jacob and I both got a chance to sit in the driver’s seat and steer the big oars. With more beautiful views, we arrived at our campsite for the night and after putting up our tents everyone played Monopoly deal, followed by a balance game on the shore of the river and skipping rocks. Vic, Casey, and Suela all took great pictures, and then everyone went back to playing cards while the boys and Dana played spikeball. Then the guides yelled “DINNERS READY!” and everyone rushed over to find amazing chicken and roasted pepper burritos. Once everyone was finished and some had seconds, a game of big spoon was played to finish off the leftovers. I personally didn’t know what big spoon was, but being the leader of the day I felt obligated to play. Then I found that big spoon was being fed the leftovers directly into your mouth, so Matreiya, Suela, Allie, Dana, Bryan, and I were all spoon-fed the fillings of the burrito that were left, which was good and slightly disgusting but in a fun way. Then for dessert we had chocolate chip brownies, which was personally very close to an out-of-body experience. Then Bryan, Lee, and I went off to have awesome conversations while the sun set on the dusty mountains, and the rest of the campers went back to their spikeball and cards. And as the sun set and the moon rose everyone waited for me to finish this blog, telling jokes and stories and relaxing under the stars after a beautifully fun, memorable, and exausting day paddling down the Deschutes River.
That’s all for today,