Today was the day to do what our son had selected as his adventure for the trip.? When we were planning and budgeting, I told him that if he was going to some of the RV driving and all the toad driving at each destination on our “tour-de-America” trip, then I would join him on his selection.
He selected zip lining and white water rafting.? He signed up for both of us to do the zip lining first while the morning was still cool in the mountains.? The plan was for us to do the white water rafting adventure in the afternoon when the sun had heated the day up (but the water was still ice-cold).?? I am not a high adventure kind of guy.? My idea of high adventure is to try to beat the crowd to the buffet.
We selected Montana WhiteWater in Gardiner Montana because they offer both adventures from the same location. ? They are located just outside the North entrance at Yellowstone in a small little town of 600 population. ? This was about 2 hours from our west side campground but is still a breathtaking view of scenery and wildlife.
Our zip line guides were Chris and Libby and they couldn’t have been better.? They made it seem like there was nothing to it and inspired confidence in even this old fat man.? One guide would go first to make sure to catch us as we get to each stop platform.? The other guide then would stay with us and make sure we were each properly connected to the line and send us off and join the group last at each landing.
The one detail that the didn’t tell us is that when we arrived at the last platform which was 60 feet off the ground, there are no steps to get down.?? We had to free jump with nothing but a rope inside a self breaking pulley mechanism.? This old fat man did not like that part as it was a free fall for the first 1/2 the way down, then it worked by slowing you down before you hit the ground.? Clearly since I am writing this article, I lived to tell about it.
The white water adventure was later in the day after the sun had heated the day up.? The water was still around 50 degrees, but the company provided wet suites, and vinyl pull over coats that provided adequate insulation from the water.?? That made the trip much more enjoyable.
There were 4 rafts that took the tour at the same time with each raft having its own guide.? I found this to be fun once we were headed down the Yellowstone river.? This adventure to me was much more like work as we had to carry the raft to the river from the bus.? Then we had to do a lot of paddling forward and back during most of the trip.?? I was quite tired and am now sore as a result of this activity.? However, All-in-all, it was fun.