When we arrived at Horseshoe Bend, the marina where we would launch the jet ski, it was about 10:00 a.m., and not many people had started to unload. That made it really nice to get the trailer backed down the ramp without a lot of people waiting.
After slowly cruising out of the marina boundaries, we found that Horseshoe Bend is a pretty big area. Once we were all ready, we headed north to the waters between the high canyon walls. As the rock walls began to rise, our friends wanted to stop for a while to let the boys jump off the cliff walls. So we watched them climb up the rock ledge and then muster the nerve to actually make the jump. They commented that it didn’t look too terribly high from the water, but once you were up there, it was intimidating! As we watched them jump, it seemed like they had a lot of "hang time," and their legs would start pedaling on the way down. Then “whoosh,” they’d disappear into the deep water.
|The boys climbed up on this rock ledge and jumped off.|
|Then they found this ledge to jump off...even more of a thrill.|
We explored the first few miles of the canyon and took some pictures before lunch. The canyon walls rise as high as 1000 feet. In the deepest areas, the water goes down as far as 500 feet.
|A scenic picture near Devil's Canyon.|
After lunch, it was decided that the adults would take a tour of the canyon, going up about 25 miles, just beyond Barry’s Landing. That covers the most spectacular scenery in the canyon. The guys were driving the other two jet skis and had their wives on behind. My friend Julie was riding behind me, and we were hoping to cruise, look around, and have ample time for pictures. When they said, "Let’s go,” I had no idea they meant full throttle!! Whoa. The boys obviously loved the open water and high speeds! So as not to be left behind, I did my best to follow…30 mph…40 mph…45 mph …50 mph!!??? I guess this was not the scenic tour!! It was all I could do to navigate the waves and keep us from being bounced around too much. I had a death grip on the handle bars, my pony tail was flying, and the wind blew my visor off…three times. Luckily, Julie caught it each time, and I finally decided to just hook it around my knee and forget it.
|Do you see the jet ski on the right edge of the picture?|
After a few miles, the guys stopped, waited a minute for us to catch up, and then pointed out some beautiful rock formations. As we cruised into Devil's Canyon, we got a real treat: we spotted several mountain goats.
Continuing up the river, we were enveloped by the colorful rock walls. Jenn noted that between the walls we felt so small, like an ant in a deep sidewalk crack! Perhaps one can get a sense of that from the pictures. As boats and jet skis moved up and down the river, the waves they created didn’t have far to go before they bounced off the wall; thus, the waters stayed stirred up as long as water-crafts were throwing big wakes.