CFI women’s trips provide a time and place for deepening connections to the wild and trying out new skills. You will have the opportunity to be physical, relax, and play outdoors!
You may opt to try out the inflatable kayaks (IKs or “duckies”) during the first two days on milder water or ride in the rafts and learn to row or just take in the sights. We will see dramatic geologic formations and a good chance that we will sight wildlife such as Bighorn Sheep, Otters, and Bald and Golden Eagles. The weather is typically dry and in the 90’s, though we could have short storms at this change of season time. The river is still a comfortable temperature; we do provide helmets, splash gear and optional farmer john wetsuits for those in the inflatable kayaks on the first two days. When we run the rapids of Westwater Canyon, splash gear and helmets will be worn by all.
Women of all ages and backgrounds enjoy this trip; youth in 9th grade and above – traveling with an adult – are welcome, and this trip is often a memorable time with mom, grandmother, or that special aunt or mentor. Our group will be congenial and small. We often have a nice mix of loyal returnees and first-timers. This will be a special celebratory trip, acknowledging 35 years of CFI women’s river trips with Founding Director, Karla VanderZanden.
We share readings from Ellen Meloy, Ann Zwinger, Terry Tempest Williams, and others who write creatively and passionately about the canyon country. Join us for optional morning stretching and greeting the day. We will consider “reciprocity” — ways of giving back to Mother Earth and restoring beauty and balance in our everyday lives.
Class I & II stretch in Horsethief and Ruby Canyons and III-IV rapids in Westwater Canyon depending on water level. You need to be able to get in and out of rafts, both on shore and if you go into the river. You need to be able to walk up banks and carry personal gear to and from your tent site. There is an option to paddle solo inflatable kayaks on the Class I-II stretch only; there are short hikes from camp that are optional.