Sunday, November 07, 2010

I decided to go on the whitewater rafting trip. We traveled for 2 days down the Nymboida River about a 2 hour drive inland from Coffs Harbour. It was quite remote and we only saw one other set of paddlers on the river. The river was very high due to the big rainfall we had last week, while we were driving to the site we set off from, one of the rivers we had to cross was within 6 inches of flooding a bridge. This made for some exciting times on the river.
There were class 5 rapids that we ran, that had huge standing waves and at least a meter and a half drop in one spot. There were 5 paddlers and a guide in our raft. The paddlers consisted of 2 young German fellows and a young couple that had just finished university, the girl was from New Zealand and the guy was an Aussie. We had to work as a team and paddle in sync in order to drive the boat at speed in the entries of the rapids. We also got very good and "getting down and holding on" as we were bounced around the boat. It was amazing the skill of the guide to thread through the rapids and dance around the rocks. We portaged over several sections that were not safe with the increased water flow, but apparently we had a much easier time on other sections of the river that would have been more difficult at low water. We got thoroughly wet a number of times. My body is telling me that I haven't been kind to it. The food provided was excellent, the highlight being chicken cooked over an open fire with mango chutney, yum!!
It was great to have a chance to get off Cat's Paw IV and participate in a totally different kind of water activity. The added bonus was been driven 2 hours into the country side and back on a different route. I enjoyed the bird sightings along the route, we also saw a lizard and a possum that was interested in our food. I was not so thrilled with the reports of snakes at one campsite and the continual sightings of spiders, I know they can be poisonous here. It was interesting getting to know a group of very nice young people and share some of our experiences with them. Barry enjoyed a quiet weekend without me and is waiting to get his next scuba dive in.