This summer, while waiting for our childrens’ turn to show their hogs, Eric Wilkinson invited Lance and I to go kayaking with him and Shannon. Being a “never say no” kind of gal, I instantly agreed. Lance slightly hesitantly and somewhat reluctantly agreed to accompany me. Things with school (figuratively drowning) and at home (house a disaster, needy children, baskets and baskets of peaches needed processing) being the way they are I was very tempted to bail out but could not bring myself to make the call…..so we went...and we (BOTH of us) were so glad we did. Glorious, glorious, glorious!
One would think that kayaking 3.5 miles upstream would be physically taxing...but one would be wrong if the “stream” one was kayaking was the stretch of the Snake River that runs past Twin Falls, ID. The river is wide, slow, and very user friendly. The day was also very user friendly: overcast, warm but not too hot, and slightly (VERY slightly) breezy. Perfect.
The day was perfect. So were the people. Eric is Mr. Congeniality in a long, tall body. Shannon is short and sassy in every good sense of the phrase. Karen is everyone’s favorite aunt, whether they are related to her or not. John’s sense of adventure matches his red hair and Natalie’s graciousness matches her friendly smile. Lance and I were the newcomers….and we hope to become frequent comers.
Speaking of comers….Kayaking rapidly came to be my newest addiction. With minimal physical effort, we maximized our outdoor enjoyment. The Snake River Canyon is truly amazing….500 feet deep and a quarter mile wide, it cuts through ancient basalt lava flows as it winds for 50 miles through southern Idaho.
A huge stone outcropping interrupts the river about half way between the kayak input and Shoshone Falls. One has to portage the kayaks about 200 m. We found that one also has to explore the rock outcroppings. Shannon, Eric and Karen had to jump into the pools and John had to try kayaking a couple of the rapids. We all had to admire the scenery.
The island/outcroppings were amazing; Shoshone Falls was outright stunning. Known as the “Niagara of the West”, it is 212 feet (65 m) high—45 feet (14 m) higher than Niagara Falls—and flows over a rim nearly 1,000 feet (300 m) wide. It is amazing to see from above. It is even more amazing to see from below. We kayaked close to the falls, so close that our faces were misted by the spray and our kayaks were rocked by the cascading water’s wake. So cool!!!! SO COOL!!
And then we did it in reverse, this time kayaking 3.5 miles downstream. The difference between kayaking downstream and upstream was barely noticeable. The magic of kayaking, though, was very noticeable. I am hooked. Kayaks are now on my wish list. Anyone know where I can get six?