DAY ONE of my Salmon River rafting trip


This is a 6 part series of my Salmon River rafting trip with the folks from O.A.R.S. I won this trip for being the April 2011 contributor-of-the-month at

Our O.A.R.S. trip started with a brief introduction the night before our scheduled departure from McCall to Salmon, Idaho.  We met at The Hunt Lodge where our team leader (Dan) went over some trip details and expectations.

Bright and early the next morning we made our way to the McCall airport where we boarded a series of small private planes to shuttle us closer to our rafting put-in point.  The weather was perfect for our hour-long flight, which enabled us to enjoy some scenic areas of rural Idaho.

Once we landed at the Salmon airport, we boarded a bus that took us the remainder of the way to our starting point.  The bus ride was about two hours long and the anticipation among the guest was building…we were all extremely excited to get on the water.  Once we arrived at our put-in spot, we received additional instructions on safety and details of the trip.  After enjoying our first of many crew-prepared meals, we were finally ready to hit the river.  We rafted for a few hours, stopping once for a short hike before reaching our first camp site of the trip.  As we disembarked we received further instructions on the camp process—then we formed a fire-line to assist in unloading the boats.  By the time we had our tents set up; the crew had appetizers prepared for us.

Just as we were settling in getting to know one another, the call for dinner was announced—this first evening we enjoyed grilled salmon (how apropos), rice and salad…very impressive for camp food.

After such a beautiful day and evening, everyone began to retire for the night.  The soothing sounds of the rapids lulled us all to sleep.  Many of the crew members opted to sleep out in the open on their boats.  As midnight approached, unbeknownst to all of us, the weather began to change.  Wet stuff from above began dispersing.  Only but one party was smart enough to put their rain-fly on—needless to say, for the rest of us, this was a disruptive event.  The entire camp was now up, and out of their tents trying to affix their rain fly’s.  Unfortunately for the crew, and a few other folks, they had to set up tents in the soaking rain.   As I was getting dressed to put my rainfly on, I noticed someone lurking near my tent, as this person noticed I was up, she asked if she could share my tent as she had not set one up.  What was I to say…

After my new lodger helped me with the rain fly, we attempted to get comfortable and get back to sleep.  Unfortunately for me it was a bit rough, not only was my sleeping bag damp, but having a strange woman next to me wasn’t helping matters. As morning approached, I noticed my lodger was not having as tough a time sleeping as I did.  As a matter of fact, it was getting late enough that I had to began disassembling the tent while she continued to snooze…it wasn’t until the tent collapsed upon here that she finally awoke.

Click “Day Two” to continue reading about my Salmon River rafting trip with the folks from O.A.R.S.

Mike Shubic

Mike Shubic is a seasoned road trip travel video blogger, traversing the byways of the world looking for those hidden gems of the road. From unique destinations, unexpected discoveries, creative cuisine, intriguing inns to exciting attractions…the road is his page. The experiences are his ink. And every 300 miles, a new chapter begins. Whether you live vicariously or by example, Mike will do the exploring so you can have an adventure.