Canoeing was number one on Luke's summer to-do list. Early on this summer, we picked up a pamphlet for a place called Hodges Canoe Trips located only about an hour south of us and were excited to check it out. Only the weather kept getting hot and staying hot and let's be honest, who really wants to canoe when the heat index is over 100? Not me. But with a lower forecast this week, we planned on it for the end of the week. When I called, the owners warned me that the river was low due to drought and we would need to walk the canoe over the rocks. I assured them that was not a problem, as we had two little kids, one of whom is crazy and has absolutely no fear around water. My parents came with us and Luke rode in their canoe while Tommy rode with us.
As we found out, low meant REALLY low in some spots with huge exposed rocks. Where it was low, the water also tended to flow fast. You would get used to the gentle flow of higher water, then the depth of the water would drop and it would flow fast over rocks.
Although Tommy was not at all afraid to dive head first into the river, he was afraid of the noise the canoe made when it hit the rocks. This resulted in an incident where he jumped over the side of the canoe in the middle of a current and stated that he was going to walk the rest of the way. I lost a flip flop that was quickly pulled downstream, Shane went downstream with the canoe and I managed to bash a toe into a rock while convincing Tommy that, no, walking was NOT an option. Oh, Tommy.
It was a beautiful day, though. The boys had such a great time and aside from a brief crop up thunderstorm, we had perfect weather.
It was definitely an adventure. About halfway through, I remarked to Shane that our canoe had a lean to it. About ten minutes later, something happened and our canoe leaned in such a way that I ended up underwater. It happened so fast that I have no memory of the canoe leaning or being thrown out or anything. My first thought was opening my eyes underwater, looking up and thinking, "What am I doing underwater?" My next thought was, "I hope Shane has Tommy." I came up for air, grabbed my glasses which were floating downstream (yes, I'm STILL not allowed to wear contacts), waved to everyone that I was all right... then sat back down in the river when the adrenaline shakiness hit me. I was turned talking to my mom when it happened and she said I just flipped backwards over the side of the canoe. Shane thinks we clipped a rock underwater. Fortunately, he managed to grab Tommy and keep the canoe mostly upright. Who knew canoeing was such a high impact sport?
My soul could be happy living on a river, I think. The water was the perfect temperature, so cool and clear--aside from always trying to steal our shoes.
It definitely made for a fun day for all of us, although we were all exhausted by the end of the four mile canoe trip! It was a good workout. My favorite parts were watching the boys outside of the canoe, splashing in river and climbing on rocks.
I took this when we stopped on a little island to eat our lunch. We let the boys take off their life vests and splash around and climb on the boulders. I regretted letting Tommy remove his when he began cannoballing off this boulder.
I'm so glad Luke asked to do this.