Wednesday, June 14, 2006
Please to be rafting
So this weekend was adventure packed! Went to Lake George in upstate New York with 16 others with the intentions of white water rafting in the mighty Hudson River Gorge. On Saturday (10th), we drove into Bolton Landing where we had reserved very cute cabins at the Twin Bay Village. I had seen the weather report before leaving New York City and knew that it was going to rain big time and the clouds were rolling in steadily when we reached.
The Lake itself was absolutely beautiful. It reminded me of Lake Tahoe a lot. The Village of Lake George was thumping with activity as it was a huge biker rally weekend. So we saw bikes of every brand, make and size imaginable. Anyway, so we checked into our cabins. One of them had a neat boardwalk closeby and the view of the Lake was breathtaking from there.
The Tongue Mountain Hike
While planning the trip, I had made one thing clear....we had to go on a hike!!! We just had to. Even it was only 1 mile. So despite the rain, we set off on a hike at the nearby Tongue Mountain. We were ready to get completely wet.....but the canopy of trees kept us dry. It was a bautiful experience to hear rain falling steadily around us, but not getting wet at all. The hike itself was very enjoyable but scary at times. Courtesy spooky stories delivered by K, Sam and Seems.... pbbftt... :P
We came back from our hike to Bolton Landing where another surprise was in store. Complete blackout. No Power anywhere. So we whiled away time and waited for it to come back. Hanging out in utter darkness with some 10 other people, drinking vodka and waving flashlights around turned out to be a lot of fun in the meantime :-) hehehehe. The power did return eventually and we played a hilarious and a tad competitive game of dumb charades. It was too much fun. The night ended on a happy note....but due to the rain, extreme cold and the aftermath of the blackout, there was skepticism about actually going rafting the next day.
Please to be rafting NOW!
Sunday morning dawned nice and dry thankfully and brought with it a fresh jolt of enthusiasm to raft. We will face the cold! Yes we will!
So the company we went to was Wild Waters. Highly recommended. They make the whole rafting adventure very comfortable and friendly. We got to wear really cool wetsuits! They shuttled us up to the load in station....all the while giving us clear instructions on how to save our asses if we fell in the water etc.
I was nervous when I caught sight of the river and the surging rapids. I was nervous when we sat in our rafts and got basic instructions from our super duper cool guide Gabe. I was nervous when we carried our raft down to the river. I was perfectly home the moment I jumped into the raft and started paddling.
17 miles, 20 or so rapids, 5 hours. Amazing experience. Most of the rapids were class 3...a couple were a low class 4. The best part of our time on the water was that our guide was always spicing things up for us. He made us do spins, go under rapids and also surf rapids. During a surf, we actually paddle upstream and pile in the front of the raft to create a wave. Hahaha. That was awesome...we had to try real hard to do it though. Gabe also let us go on a mini hike atop the Virgin waterfalls. He was cooool.
Oh did I mention, the rafting company also gave us food? We got to eat lunch by the river which was a blissful experience. I hate peanut butter and I still ate it....food just tasted better outdoors. :P We also got steaming hot food after the rafting adventure. All in all, an amazing experience.
But of course there were pictures.
Here are the ones taken by the rafting company: http://www.flickr.com/photos/amrita/sets/72157594163057488/
And here are the ones I took: http://www.flickr.com/photos/amrita/sets/72157594163768880/