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June 2005

Moab – what it’s all about

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Since my domain is ‘landofmoab.com’ I should probably make a note about why I love Moab so much. My first trip to Moab was a about the time I graduated from my EMT class. I met a person there that mentioned her summer job was to take people down the river. I asked more questions about the river and just really wanted to try river rafting. I had heard of Moad all my life, but I’d never been there before we we made the plans and headed on down.

Moab is HOT. The weather is nice, but it’s a desert. The Colorado River flows through town which makes river rafting a big business in Moab. Other activities in Moab are hiking, rock climbing, motocross and mountain biking along the slick rock trail and all the off road vehicles across the nation bring their machines to town to see how they can handle the trails. Another great thing about Moab is that it’s about 30 seconds from the entrance to Arches National Park. Arches is home of the Delicate Arch. It’s long hike up, but once you get there it’s worth it.

My love of Moab comes from the river. I’ve never cared for off-road, I don’t rock climb, I like hiking, but I don’t like hiking without a destination. The river offers so much. For one, if you get hot you can jump out of boat. Then, if you get board, there are rapids to amuse you. Most the river ride is just about laying back and enjoying the scenery. There’s a few companies (like 20) that will host your adventure down the river. They really do everything for you. All you have to provide is the money. They bring the lunch, the buckets, the paddles and hook you up with the life jacket. Along the river, if another company gets close to your boat it’s all out war – meaning a giant water fight. Anything goes, except knifing the raft. The first time I went down the river one guy got injured. he got smacked in the face by a bucket. Nothing serious happened, but he was out of the fight for a while. The next time I went down the river I hatched a plan to steal a bucket from the other boat that was attacking us. The plan was when the guy throws the bucket forward to catch it, grab the bucket. This plan was flawless other than when the bucket comes forward 5 gallons of water come flying in my face at the same time. I needed help. A brave man was next to me so I enlisted him in the battle. He was to go get the bucket from straight on and I would grab it from the side. The man did his job bravely and was smacked in the head because of it. He probably needed a few stitches, but he survived and we got the bucket!

One trip down with the scouts the river was very lazy and slow. We spent the time jumping out of the boat and just floating down on our own. When the tiny rapids would come the guide made us get back in the boat. There is a trick to boarding the boat. First, use assistance. It’s almost impossible to do it on your own. With assistance, the person in the boat grabs you by the life vest. You count to three (or a million if you’ve got the time) then push down hard then immediately pull up – the person in the boat just falls backwards while holding you. I learned this by my good friend Christie Johnson.

In the first trip down I took on the Slick Rock Trail… practice loop. The SRT is 10.6 miles of awesome. One day, when the girls are older, I’d like to go down again and ride the whole trail. For this trip the practice loop was plenty. Most the trail is made of sandstone. The rating is high technical difficulty and high aerobic. Since I had neither of these requirements I only did the practice loop. I won’t go into detail on the practice loop. I would go into detail on the main loop, but I’ve never done it.

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