So, the wife and I finally got some time to spend on a genuine vacation. Albeit, a weekend trip to Sacramento. No parents or grandparents, no brothers, nephews, nieces. No family politics, a real break. Can you sense that I had a good time? That's me in the middle of the back row in the photo. Sometimes instead of going down by ourselves, we'll "Floatilla". We sync up and get three to six rafts together and just go over the edge. Its better with five or six rafts together.
My friends have been going to this same place ran by Whitewater Adventures for the past five years, and now I know why. I would like to go next year too. The rapids aren't too bad, and a great learning experience for a beginner like me. I estimate about 600 people went on the same weekend as me, and it was pretty well organized. The Whitewater Adventures crew knew what they were doing. It didn't feel too crowed, and most of the attendees where really nice people. A few could get overzealous with the super soaker on the river. :)
If you're a couple, you get an inflatable raft that kind of resembles a kayak. If you have a threesome or a foursome, you can get a more traditional inflatable raft that is more "boatish". The kayak raft is very maneuverable.
You put your soft side cooler between you and your mate. Strap it down with bungee cords, less you want a yard sale downstream if you flip your raft. Then you pretty much just float down, paddle when necessary, and drink cheap watered down beer all day Saturday and Sunday. When you need to paddle, you stick your beer, which is nestled inside a coozy, inside your personal floatation device; just tuck it down your neck. Then its ready when you're through the rapids.
Before rafting on day one, you chuck everything you don't want in the river with you inside a big cargo truck. Then at the end of day one, you walk around a big tarp and find your belongings, pitch your tent and eat a nice steak for dinner. The place hires college kids to do most of the work for you like setup the rafts, organize them when you leave the river, make breakfast, pack a lunch in a dry sack and bbq those nice steaks.