Friday, June 3, 2011


I've mentioned rafting before, but haven't actually gone since that post. But now, with summer and ridiculous heat upon us, rafting season has triumphantly returned and the first trip of 2011 was made on Memorial Day.

Rafting has many great advantages. For example:
  1. Cost of rafts and supplies aside, it's free, and you'll only pay for the raft once. And unless you're buying pizza from Bud Murphy's or cases of alcohol to take with you, it will never cost you anything. Public pools charge you to cool down. The Youghiogheny River is just there.
  2. It's a very intense Fayettenam experience, enjoyable by both natives and visitors. You get to see people jumping off of rocks, bridges, and rope swings. I'm pretty sure some river rats intentionally jumped off the rock near us on purpose to get us wet, which was only a problem because the water was so damn cold. And I was eating pizza. Then there are the drunks, the people smoking weed with babies, and the River Kings and Queens tan and leathery parked by the bridges with American and POW flags raised high while they grill.
  3. The Fayettenam Experience shows both the ridiculous, good, and kind of sad. The sightseeing is actually pretty great. You're out in nature and get to see how pretty the Nam really is, especially if you're rafting from Dawson to Layton. Connellsville to Dawson, however, has really neat abandoned bridges and an old abandoned distillery. Also sad.
  4. Natural tan!
  5. Great cool-off.
  6. Good exercise. You'll have to row to avoid banks, rocks, and tree branches, which works your arms. Swimming is also a great workout.
  7. Extreme bonding. You're in a raft on a river for at least three hours with other people.
  8. Relaxation. For the most part, especially if the river is high, you can lie back and enjoy the float.
  9. It's a great opportunity to get drunk.
There are some downsides and safety tips to be had, but for now, wait for another hot day and get out there and enjoy the Mighty Yough.

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