Between John and Travis' birthdays, in general, their gifts to each other have been "experiences" rather than tangilbe presents. In years past, golfing has been a big deal, but now that Travis does that a few times a month as part of his job (poor, poor guy), that just didn't seem special enough. Last year, we got them a "trip to go horseback riding". Haven't gotten around to that yet. So, this year we decided to get him something and actually plan the trip to make it happen. Hence, for his 30th birthday, he got a trip to Hell - well, Hell's Canyon, or Hellgate - along the Rogue River - via Hellgate Jet Boat Excursions.
The idea had been strongly recommended to us by a couple of different people, so it seemed the thing to do. It was a hoot! It is quite an amazing thing they have going there - loading 80 people into a jet boat and streaming across a river only 2 feet deep in many places. The day was beautiful, 80 degrees, but by the end of the ride, we were pulling out our second set of sweatshirts as we were so wet. When we loaded, I figured I wouldn't be getting wet at all. I was in the middle of the row, about 3/4ths of the way back - no problem, I'd stay dry. Ha, ha, ha! That was definitely NOT the case. No one was safe. But, that was a big part of the fun. Travis sat on the outside edge, and in that seat of honor, he might have contended for one of the wettest people on the boat (Happy birthday) - he rarely missed any splash.
The scenery was gorgeous as well. We saw deer, turtles, osprey, a bald eagle, wild turkeys, egrets - and the rock within the canyon was breathtaking. Our guide was outstanding as well - very passionate about the river and wildlife, and very knowledgable on providing a ride full of thrills that still felt "in control".
I definitely recommend the experience now too. This one is located in Grants Pass, but I also know that there are a couple of jet boat companies opperating out of Gold Beach too.
Thanks, Travis, for letting us share your birthday present!
Looking a "little" dry-
WET, WET, WET!