Into the Great Unknown". The river was known well enough to our boatmen, but as I've pointed out, this was my first trip, and so I had a heck of a time keeping the geography straight. We had reached day 12 of a 16 day trip, and still had 90 miles to go. We needed to make up for some leisurely days during the previous week. The plan for the day: 27 miles, our longest day of all. We intended to camp at Tuckup.
slope failures in the previous post, I'm glad to report there were no rock falls during the night. I did keep my eye on one precariously perched barrel cactus right over the cooking area. It stayed put.
There were a couple of problems. The canyon entrance is right at the top of a rapid, a sort of "you have one chance to get it right" kind of docking situation. And the docking spot is a narrow pool (no beach), so the boats have to be lashed together to hold them in place. The canyon is an extremely popular stop, and we had to hope no one was there. As it turned out a big group was leaving just as we pulled up.
Another potential problem is flash flooding, which we didn't need to fret about, but you can see what happened here in 2011 at this website: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yi1k9dvXjXY. Some of their boats were ripped loose and drifted downstream, while others got stacked on top of each other, with a loss of some supplies to the currents of the river.