The first-day whitewater rafting gave us just a taste of what was to come in the remaining week. The first set of rapids proved the guides right that you will get cold sitting at the front of the raft without rainwear. The water in the Colorado River comes from the bottom of Lake Powell and is frigid. We wound through turn after turn, and continual rapids appeared around every corner.
One of the first features was the Navajo Bridge. These two bridges, one historic and one new, represent only one of seven land crossings of the Colorado River for 750 miles (1207 km). Previous to this bridge, the only crossing of the Colorado River was the Lee Ferry which is where we originally left on this journey. The bridge site is 5 miles (8km) downriver at Marble Canyon. The distance from one rim to the other is 800 feet (244m).
Sand Pile Campsite
Our final destination on the first day was at a place called “Sand Pile,” just past “Shinumo Wash” & the 29 Mile Rapid. This is on the Fence Fault and at the 30.5 mile mark on our journey.
Rapids that we travelled through on the way (in order) are Paria Riffle, Six Mile Riffle, Badger Creek Rapid, Soap Creek Rapid, Brown’s Riffle, 13 Mile Rapid, Sheer Wall Rapid, House Rock Rapid, Red Neck Rapid, North Canyon Rapid, 21 Mile Rapid, 23 Mile Rapid, Georgie (24 Mile) Rapid, Cave Springs Rapid, 27 Mile (Tiger Wash) Rapids and finally the 29 Mile Rapid.
Features we saw along the way this day (in order) are Paria River, Cathedral Wash, 4 Mile Wash, Navajo Bridge, 6 Mile Wash, Badger Canyon, Jackass Canyon, Ten Mile Rock, Salt Water Wash, Tanner Wash, House Rock (size of a house), Rider Canyon, 18 Mile Wash, Boulder Narrows, 22 Mile Wash, Indian Dick Rock, Sheep Spring Wash, Tiger Wash and finally Shinumo Wash.
Our first camp night was on a sandy area on a slight hill. It proved to be too much slope after waking up, slid halfway off the cot several times. It was a beautiful evening under the stars.