GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

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azbackpackr
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GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by azbackpackr » Feb 24 2011 8:05 pm

Well, chalk it up to beginners luck. I put in for the lottery to get a private permit to raft the Grand Canyon in 2012. Some of you are probably familiar with the process. Anyway, newbies have 5 chances to win, whereas if you have been down the river recently you get only one chance. Anyway, I put in, and I won! My launch date is to be Sept. 20, 2012. I know, that's 19 months from now!

Well, I guess I will be talking about this from time to time. I have a main boatman already, and he'll invite some of his friends. There is room for a total of 16 people. It's a 21 day trip, with option to extend it beyond Diamond Creek to Pearce Ferry, to make it into closer to 30 days. Shared expenses, etc. We'll have more details as time goes on as to shared costs. There likely will be room for a few non-rowers.

I can't believe it! I'm already signed up for river guide school in May, so I hope to be learning something about how to do this over the next year and a half. I'm not too worried since I will have friends to help me with the logistics.
There is a point of no return unremarked at the time in most lives. Graham Greene The Comedians
A clean house is a sign of a misspent life.

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azbackpackr
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by azbackpackr » Apr 30 2011 7:48 am

Alston Neal wrote:I'm burning incense to the rafting Gods.
It worked! I am in! The whole enchilada, not just to Phantom!
There is a point of no return unremarked at the time in most lives. Graham Greene The Comedians
A clean house is a sign of a misspent life.

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azbackpackr
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by azbackpackr » May 15 2011 6:20 am

Yesterday I started a class in Multiday River Guide Leadership, THREE universitiy credits, from NAU Outdoor Recreation. Yesterday was in the pool, and was a review, for me, of some rescue and self-rescue techniques. I learned I STILL can't climb into a 13-foot paddle raft that is floating in the deep end without help from someone on the boat. Most of these youngsters could, but there were several of us who couldn't, so I didn't feel too bad.

Today we pack the rafts and other gear into the vehicles, and this afternoon we drive to Diamond Creek, in the lower western Grand Canyon, Hualapai Indian Rez. We rig in the dark, and we put in tomorrow morning. We will be using paddle rafts and oar rafts. There are 13 students, an instructor and a couple of baggage boatmen. We will float for three days, and take out at Pearce Ferry, just above Lake Mead. This stretch is called "Diamond Down." It has a few big rapids at first, then flattens out.

The weather forecast is for very windy, AND the river is very quickly rising from what it was running, at a steady 16,000 cfs, to 22,500. The higher release from Glen Canyon Dam started yesterday, and reached Phantom Ranch by midday. So, we will probably see the higher flow. It is moving fast due to being such a large volume of water.

I don't know how I got so lucky. I went from pining for a GC river trip to having THREE of them on my calendar! I'll see you all again on Thursday!
There is a point of no return unremarked at the time in most lives. Graham Greene The Comedians
A clean house is a sign of a misspent life.

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Dave1
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by Dave1 » Jun 10 2011 8:53 pm

Be careful on the river Liz, always wear your life vest!



Boater drowns in Colorado River


GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK, Ariz. – The National Park Service is investigating after a South Carolina man drowned when the boat he was in flipped over in the Colorado River on Thursday.

James J. Waring Jr. was part of a six-person private river trip that launched from Lees Ferry on Sunday.

Early reports indicate the group was traversing Hance Rapid at River Mile 76 when one of two rowboats flipped and Waring was carried down river, according to Maureen Oltrogge with the Grand Canyon National Park.

Oltrogge said another person swam to shore and a third was able to stay with the boat and eventually made it back to shore.

A passing commercial trip operated by Hatch River Expeditions located Waring facedown in the water below Hance Rapid and pulled him from the river.

CPR was administered for 45 minutes before he was pronounced dead by a doctor on scene.

Boatmen from the Hatch trip contacted the National Park Service via satellite phone. Waring's body was flown by helicopter to the South Rim Helibase Thursday afternoon then transferred to the Coconino County medical examiner and transported to Flagstaff.

Waring, 39, was from Lexington, S.C.

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azbackpackr
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by azbackpackr » Jun 11 2011 6:06 am

I saw that. Generally when people float downstream in a rapid they don't drown, although they could get hypothermia pretty quick in that cold water. He could also have gotten a head injury when the raft flipped, perhaps undiagnosed at the scene. Hope to hear more of the story later from my Park friends. As for the life vest, it's required at all times. He probably was wearing one. Will try to find out.
There is a point of no return unremarked at the time in most lives. Graham Greene The Comedians
A clean house is a sign of a misspent life.

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azbackpackr
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by azbackpackr » Sep 17 2012 5:11 pm

Well. It has been a very long wait. Since I first posted this thread, about 19 months have passed! We launch at Lees Ferry this coming Thursday. At this moment I'm powwowing in Flagstaff with 4 of the boatmen from my crew. More will arrive in town tomorrow, and we will get ourselves in fits and starts to up to the Ferry tomorrow and Wed.

WOOHOO!!!!
There is a point of no return unremarked at the time in most lives. Graham Greene The Comedians
A clean house is a sign of a misspent life.

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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by cactuscat » Sep 17 2012 5:49 pm

Nice - have a great trip!
Where is the "dislike" button?

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beterarcher
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by beterarcher » Sep 17 2012 6:02 pm

:y: Try not to have too much fun, as if that's even possible. ;)
Understand, when you eat meat, that something did die. You have an obligation to value it - not just the sirloin but also all those wonderful tough little bits.
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azbackpackr
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by azbackpackr » Sep 18 2012 6:41 am

Meeting up in Flag with some of my river crew, first of all, I despair of coming home with a normal Western accent. Several of them are from the South, or at least from places where they talk funny. Oklahoma, North Carolina and Tennessee. I told them "just don't call me "ma'am" and we'll get along fine." At which one of them shot back, "So, it will be okay with you if we just say "Hey, B**ch!" I said, "Sure that would be fine. Certainly preferable to being called "ma'am."

Also, although we had tried to keep a good gender balance in the group, we ended up with only 3 women and 9 guys starting out. Three people are hiking out at Phantom or Monument/Granite, and one of them is a gal, leaving us with 2 women and 7 guys. Our flotilla consists of five rafts, three kayaks and one gizmo (a tiny cataraft). We had some cancellations early on, and we made a decision to keep the group smaller than what is allowed, which is 16. We decided we'd have a better group if we kept it smaller, and we'd get to know each other better.

Seriously, I have something to lose sleep over. I'm the least experienced boater in the group, although I'm the permit holder. I've been worrying about the fact that the river is low and there have been many flips reported at Hance, Horn Creek and other rapids, And about the fact that an acquaintance is currently in the hospital here in Flag after being airlifted out with many broken bones (femur, hip, ribs, and 3 vertebrae) from a flip against the wall at Horn Creek. And also about this news: A crew member is leaving the trip at Diamond Creek. At that point we will be down to one boat per person. Guess who has to (gets to??) row the last 65 miles by herself! I will either row an 18-footer belonging to the outfitter, or my friend's 16-footer, or we'll take turns with them. Hope those big long heavy oars on that 18-footer are counterbalanced. If they're not, I'll steal some beer from someone and duct tape a few cans close to the handles, to counterbalance them.

Previously, I have always had someone in the raft with me, teaching me to row the boat. I have so far been able to row up to what might be considered Class III on a normal river (GC is classified differently). Anyway, there are not many more real rapids between Diamond Creek and Pearce Ferry, but there are at least 4 of them. By then, they tell me, I am going to be "all trained up." Okay, I think I'm ready... I am also going to be on cook crew with our one crew member who is an actual GC river guide. I plan on LEARNING as much as possible. So, my mental state has been switching between :y: and :o
There is a point of no return unremarked at the time in most lives. Graham Greene The Comedians
A clean house is a sign of a misspent life.

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chulavista
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by chulavista » Sep 18 2012 6:45 am

You can handle this Liz! Have fun!!!
You will never succeed if you don't try.
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PLC92084
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by PLC92084 » Sep 18 2012 8:27 am

With all them Southern boys, I bet you'll know how to play the banjo by the time you finish... :STP:

Have a great time!!

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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by MtnBart01 » Sep 18 2012 9:15 am

@PLC92084
I can already hear Dueling Banjos (played by an odd looking kid sitting on a rock) by Hance competing with the sound of the running river in the bottom of the canyon. :scared:
LET IT SNOW! Let it SNOW! Let it Snow!

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Jim_H
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by Jim_H » Sep 18 2012 10:03 am

I'd like what these mountain folk are doing living at the bottom of the Grand Canyon.
Nothing more enjoyable than a good hike out of town.

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Sun_Ray
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by Sun_Ray » Sep 18 2012 10:44 am

Can't wait to hear about your trip. :)
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sirena
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by sirena » Sep 18 2012 5:10 pm

Best of luck to you and your companions, Liz!

I just got off a lower half private trip (my present to myself after a successful river season)! One of the things that really helped me to learn was having the experienced boaters make a diagram of the major rapids beforehand in the sand showing the line and where the obstacles to avoid are. Also, the more time you spend on the sticks before Diamond, the better off you will be. A trick that I learned for leverage is to put two small ammo cans to put your feet on when rowing, especially pulling. And use your whole body! Rowing comes from the core, not the arm muscles. As my friend said, "it's easier to do a hundred situps than a hundred pull-ups." I'm sure you will get all sorts of tips and tricks from the other boatmen as well.

Rowing was a totally different experience for me, because all season I had been learning to drive the motorboat lines through the rapids, which are not always the same as the rowing lines. Plus, the whole hundreds of situps thing rather than cranking the motor to move :)

I don't know if you have been, but one of my favorite Diamond down locations is Travertine Grotto, a sweet multi-tiered waterfall (not to be confused with Travertine Falls, which is a little ways downstream)

Above all, have a fantastic time out there!!
"May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view."
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big_load
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by big_load » Sep 18 2012 7:41 pm

Have fun, and be careful!

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beterarcher
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by beterarcher » Sep 19 2012 7:19 am

Jim_H wrote:I'd like what these mountain folk are doing living at the bottom of the Grand Canyon.


A canyon is just an upside down mountain. ;)
Understand, when you eat meat, that something did die. You have an obligation to value it - not just the sirloin but also all those wonderful tough little bits.
Anthony Bourdain

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Trishness
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by Trishness » Sep 19 2012 6:29 pm

Have fun LizzardBath! Be safe too~~~~

Trish
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"May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds" Ed Abbey

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azbackpackr
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by azbackpackr » Oct 13 2012 11:01 pm

I'm back! Rowed a lot, rowed Granite, among others! Great group, too! More later...

Thanks, everyone, for the comments.
There is a point of no return unremarked at the time in most lives. Graham Greene The Comedians
A clean house is a sign of a misspent life.

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chumley
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by chumley » Oct 14 2012 7:29 am

Awesome! I can't wait to see photos and hear more about your adventure!
Highway to hell

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azbackpackr
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Re: GC river trip lottery--I won!!!

Post by azbackpackr » Oct 14 2012 8:35 am

I am still kind of in the "stunned" stage. I need to get myself home and get my gear washed and dried out (we had rain the last couple days) and pay my bills, see if I still have a job or two to go back to, etc. I intensely want to move away from Eagar, and that is preoccupying my mind a lot. Anyone want to buy a huge old house in Eagar? Half acre, 2800 sq. ft with garage, fruit trees and garden space, $160K OBO. It's right in town, so it won't burn down in the next fire. But has pasture across the street, next door, and behind it--tons of privacy, very, very quiet, nicest neighbors in the world.
There is a point of no return unremarked at the time in most lives. Graham Greene The Comedians
A clean house is a sign of a misspent life.

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