Salt River - 2013

Salt River Float

September 1, 2012

We couldn't say "no" to the convergence of so many improbables. David and Rogil had a free weekend. The Salt River was running at a healthy 1100 cfs. And a few weeks earlier, Dennis and I found not one, but two, Sevylor inflatables washed up on a beach in New Mexico.

With an early (for us) morning start, we put into the Salt before the onslaught of tubers and floated all the way to the take-out at Phon D. Sutton. David and Rogil darted around us in kayaks, while Dennis and I attempted to manoeuver the larger of the Heron Lake salvaged Sevylors (nicknamed "Heron Gone"). It's a three-person floatie — more of a"bloatie" really — with inflatable backrests. But it scooted easily over rocks, slammed delightfully into standing waves, and was far too comfortable in flat water to do much but lie back and watch the scenery slide by.

And speaking of scenery, I really forgot how much I enjoy the Salt, especially if you get on the water before the weekend partiers have scared off all the wildlife. Here are a few of the birds we saw: turkey vultures, kingfishers, green herons, great blue herons, sandpipers, mergansers, cormorants, sharp-shinned hawks, kestrels, red-winged blackbirds, gila woodpeckers and on a cliff high above the river near the end of the run, we saw TWO BALD EAGLES!

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Just a great way to spend a 106-degree summer day, and the "bloatie" is my new favorite beach toy. Thanks to David and Rogil for reminding us about the Salt River, and for putting up with our pokey paddling.