Here we are, setting up camp and getting situated in the absolutely most perfect spot, right next to the river in a beautiful, private little clearing. Geoff and Justin built a fire and set up the tent, while I chased Max everywhere he shouldn't go...into the river, by the fire, into the stickery bushes, etc.
We made a dutch oven dinner with potatoes, carrots, onions and hamburger. It was yummy. Then we put some peach & raspberry cobbler on the coals to cook, while we went exploring and on a little hike.
On this hike, Geoff reminded me so much of a deer...
He amazes me. It doesn't matter how difficult the terrain, how steep the hill, or how heavy the load, Geoff moves gracefully like a deer. He never slips, trips or slides. He scales a fence, tree stumps, barriers with no apparent effort. At one point, the hill was so steep going down, I was concerned about getting the kids down safely. Geoff put Justin on his shoulders and Max in his arms, and bounded down the hill without a second thought...gracefully, just like a deer. He is so strong, capable, and confident. I never have to worry when he is around. Of course, I stumbled my way down wishing there were room somewhere on the deer for me to ride too. Amazing!The trail was covered with the most beautiful wild flowers. Eventually, we ended up at a little hot springs which had been totally revamped since Geoff had been there a couple of months ago. According to Geoff, previously it had been a nice warm mud hole. Now it was this peaceful, beautiful and soothing hot spring tub. It was SO AWESOME!
The air was cool and crisp, but the hot spring was toasty warm. Geoff and I could have stayed there for a very long time!!!! Max loved it and Justin managed to get his legs in.
We headed back to camp just in time for a very delicious cobbler. It was late and Max went right to sleep. We all followed shortly there after. Max and Justin slept great, and Geoff and I suffered greatly trying to keep Max happy and comfortable and Justin warm. And of course by the time we got it figured out, it was 6am-- and Max was ready to go!
I started the morning fire with the help of a little fire fluid, and made breakfast--pancakes, eggs and orange juice. Geoff is such an organized and clean camper. He had everything we needed and knew exactly where everything was. It's easy to see that here, out in the middle of no where, Geoff is in his element. He makes it so fun for all of us.
On the way home we pulled over at a couple watch points along the way and watched some rafters maneuver through the rapids. This area is stunningly beautiful.
After breakfast, we cleaned up camp, explored, threw rocks of the bridge (Max's favorite activity) and went to the Hot springs again. It felt so good to take a nice warm bath and head home clean!
At one point, we cross the river over an older bridge. Geoff said, "Anyone want to jump off the bride?" Silence. None of us wanted to make the jump, but we ALL wanted to watch Geoff make the jump. After some negotiations with Justin, the deal was made, and here is the jump.
Never a dull moment. What a blast. We had so much fun, and are all ready talking about our next trip. WHY did we wait so long to start this great tradition?
"Dad sure knows a lot about 'livin', doesn't he mom!!"
"Mom, you're the REAL cook in this family!"