Sunday, June 14, 2009

River Hippies!

The journey was 84 miles, 4 days, and lots of rapids.

My brother invited me on a river trip he was taking a group of young men on last week. None of us had much rafting experience and none of us had ever rafted this particular stretch of river, the Green River through Desolation Canyon. It was one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen.

There is an American subculture I have termed "River Hippies". It is unbelievable how many people live for running rivers. They have a whole vocabulary that only river runners can grasp. Men, women, and children are all part of this subculture. One thing is for sure, they are some of the nicest people.

They are a little more open than the rest of the world. They set up their "groovers" (toilets) on the edge of the stream and if you float by they just wave. And if you happen to float by at bath time you might just get an eye full. Then again what young men's trip would be a success without seeing a naked lady bathing in a river?

It was probably one of the most wonderful experiences of my life. I love going into the wilderness where my cell phone doesn't work. That way I am completely free of work and everyday annoyances. I am a little freaked out about checking my voicemail, so I haven't done it yet.

These are some pictures of Joe Hutch rapid, it is new to the river this year. A flash flood came down a side canyon and created a rocking rapid that flips boats all the time. Seven people from our group went over in this rapid, luckily some River Hippies were on the shore to toss our boys a throw-line.

(No one brought a camera on this trip or if they did it got wet, so I stole these off the e-net, thanks to whomever took them.)


Andy W. said...


I wonder if the new rapid is named after the river hippy that first discovered it. I may be hitting the Hoback in August. Can't wait. Cool post!


Doug O said...

I can see the appeal for the river hippie. I've probably been on 12 rafting trips in my life. Usually down Brown's Canyon on the Arkansas in Colorado (with my young men's group also)(got to know the Salida Suckhole pretty good), but also Glenwood Canyon on the Colorado and short trip on the Salmon River in Idaho. I love it, but it's been years. This post made me want to go back.

Doug O said...

Never seems to be enough time to fish on those trips though....