Saturday, April 28, 2007

Maiden Voyage

Last weekend Shel and I were driving through Caldwell when we stumbled across a canoe for sale. They were originally asking $800 but were down to $400. We pondered it a bit over Mexican and decided ultimately to call in the morning and offer $200. No dice. So we sat on it until Sunday night when I called again and offered $300, he took it. So Sunday night I drove out and returned with a new canoe (to us) complete with paddles and pretty basic outfitting. At the time there was some question whether it was the $1600 or $800 model. We're pretty sure now it's the $800, but $300 is still a good deal in an economy where you need 3 Hamiltons to fill up your gas tank.

The new canoe (except ours is red)

We were pretty excited to get it in the water, but the way the week went our first chance was Friday night. We drove up to Lucky Peak with the ambitious plan of paddling our gear across the reservoir and camping out. Why is this ambitious you might ask? Oh, I failed to mention... with two dogs.

In the end it went well, though by the time we had ferried the gear across and I had returned for the dogs it was nearly dark. Desi had never been in a canoe before, or to the best of our knowledge on a boat of any kind. I was forced to grab the skin on her back in two places and drag her into the boat while she clawed at me and everything around her. Once in though, she sat right down between my knees and didn't budge, even when on a switch I clocked her in the head by accident with the paddle. The dogs had a blast running around on our own beach and as has become a camping tradition both quickly returned to camp with deer legs.

After a good campfire we awoke to a feels-like-summer morning. The dogs chased ducks and we got a leisurely start. We had to head back to town because we had already made plans to float the Snake River with friends. It was hard mustering the energy to leave one great place to find another. The return journey with the dogs was somewhat more eventful. Kootenai wasn't content to sit still and mid crossing (~1 mile journey) we had a fun time with two dogs circling in the boat amid small waves from passing powerboats.