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I enjoy doing fun things outdoors. Family adventures, hunting, fishing, hiking, photography, etc. Get out there and enjoy ... NOTE: If you click on my photos in the blog post they will become larger.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Whitewater Rafting Adventure - Windfall Rafting

We left the lodge at "Moose River Outpost" and had a 30 minute drive to the rafting company. 

We checked in with Windfall Rafting http://www.windfallrafting.com/ and got our equipment.  Most of us wore wet suits.  All had a helmet and life jacket.  A bus was to take us to the launch area and the pick up area for our return to their headquarters. We decided to drive our vehicles 29 miles south to the pick up area on the Kennebec river so we could continue heading home from there.  We arrived and parked our vehicles.  We boarded the bus and continued to the staging area.

We split up into 2 groups, and waited in line to launch our raft.  There must have been more than 50 rafts in the staging area with 100's of people arriving.  We waited our turn and were finally told to move forward into the main line going to the river.  There is one person that is in control of who is in line and the order of departure. It reminded me of air traffic control telling when to go, stop, move left, etc. 

Once we were in line we came to the edge of the hill.  It is very steep and was a couple hundred feet to the river at the bottom of the dam.  There are stairs next to the rails.  You put the raft on the rails and walk down the steps as the raft slides along the rails. 

They had controlled water releases this weekend so it was very busy with lots of rafters.  There were several places with class 5 rapids.  We guessed the water was flowing at 10 - 12 mph. 

Once the raft was in the water we climbed in a pushed off.  I started out in the front of the boat with Doug M. 

The big rapids were in the first third of the trip.   Doug and I took a couple of direct hits up front.  We didn't have anyone get thrown out of the boat but several of us were tossed around.  One of the big rapids is called the Maytag which we liked the best. 

At some point Matt and I switched places so I was in the back of the boat.  Several others switched places also.  We stopped for lunch after 1 1/2 hours or rafting.  It felt good to get out and stretch.  The raft company had a fire going to help us warm up.  We also received a 2 person kayak raft for the remainder of our adventure.

As we continued we were able to jump in the water and float where the water was calm.  Toes up, nose up is the phrase if you are floating.  Also, take a breath at the bottom of the wave. That was fun along with the kayak. 

At one point my raft attempted a hostile takeover of the other raft in our group.  4 from the other raft were somehow pushed out or pulled into the water.  Somehow Doug M (wild man) from our boat ended up in the back of the other boat appearing to be in control of their raft.  A hat, patch, and a peg-leg is all he needed ...

I didn't bring my camera as I wasn't sure how easy it would be to keep dry.  There is a dry sack in each boat which I was unaware of.  I could have put my camera in a couple zip lock bags and into that dry sack.  I could have taken pictures in probably 60% of the trip without worrying about getting my camera dunked..  The guide on our boat had rigged a video camera mount for the front of our raft and for his helmet.  That was an added treat for our boat as it appeared we were one of the only rafts to have this.  Next time I will bring my camera ...

Once our trip ended we helped get the rafts and equipment out of the water on to trailers.  We changed out of our wet suits back at our vehicles. 

On the way to the staging area I noticed some dirt roads I wanted to explore so Kevin and I departed to go 4 wheeling.  We spent the next 1/1/2 hours taking trails and roads through the woods.  We were on the side of a hill skirting a lake with some camps on it.  I thought the road would eventually lead us to a main road somewhere.  WRONG ... ended up at some camp at the end of the lake so we had to turn around and backtrack.

A couple more trails and we finally headed for home.  Had to stop at llBean in Freeport, ME on the way down as Kevin had never been there.  Lots of remodeling since the last time I was there buying my hunting pants.  It's much more like a Cabelas or Bass Pro now.

We continued home and arrived at 9:40PM ... Yawn ...

1 comment:

  1. Nice Article! Thanks for sharing with us.

    Jungle Cottage

    ReplyDelete

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