2 day White Water Rafting on the Madi/Seti Rivers!

Trip Start Dec 29, 2007
Trip End Dec 22, 2008

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Sunday, March 23, 2008

White-water rafting Nepalese style!

Following our "expedition" into the mountains we were ready for our next adventure. Nik and I have got so used to doing these new and wonderful experiences that it may seem from reading these entries we don't appreciate what we are doing and how lucky we are.  Well we do and it’s great.  Wahoo!!

After viewing Machupuchre and Annapurna South and co how could we follow that up? Well next on the itinerary was a trip down the Madi, Seti and ending up at the Trisuli River on a big inflatable thingy with a nights camping thrown. Having heard a few stories from people we have met along the way saying we weren’t in the right season; you will have to walk with the raft; there’s no water blah blah blah we weren’t really sure what to expect.  But this was yet another dream of ours -  rafting and camping on a river, if only it had been for a few more days.

The rest in the bus was good though (when we weren’t holding our breath from the crazy guys on the road!) so we were pretty glad we at least had a couple of hours before the next adventure. On reaching the Maddie River we were donned with life jackets, helmets (aaah!) etc.. and given our training in rafting! Adam and I got split which was a shame but that just meant the competition between us rose as to who was in the fastest boat, ha ha! I was in a boat with mum and Ian, Bevan, Luna and Grace…. We definitely were the slower boat of the two but that was probably because we talked too much and had lots of fun!!

The afternoon of rafting was quite tame thank god, as we drifted slowly down the river. We were the only ones on the river and as we continued there wasn’t a house or human in sight, it was just magical and so beautiful, no one of us thought the trip could get any better after the amazing hike we had just done but this was a true highlight also and for many was the most memorable part of the trip.

Our boat seemed to have one problem though…straight lines and forward!! Our two supposedly power rafters in the front, Ian and Bevan seemed to not have the same rhythm for rowing in that Ian was rowing deep and short whilst Bevan was more interested in the amazement of the scenery all around him so kept forgetting to paddle!!! Hence we kept turning in circles, it was so funny!! We did a couple of rapids that weren’t too bad, the other group managed to go through them easily whereas we ended up backwards through them much to the frustration of our guide who pulled the short straw being in our boat!!!!  What didn’t help though was that as soon as it got rough through a rapid, I got worried about mum and grabbed her, she grabbed me back and both of us forgot to paddle, so all in all it was quite comical!!! Well for us anyway, not sure about our guide!!!

After having lunch on a bend in the river we continued on in amazement at the beauty and peacefulness of this place…… The usual antics started, water fights, people sneaking up on others and pulling them in etc... etc.. Thankfully I couldn’t swim though so was let off being dunked in the water as it was freezing!! We did one last slightly more frightening rapid then passed under a rope bridge of children sitting looking down on us. They looked quite sad which was a shame to see so we didn’t get the usual wave and smiles that local children normally give us. Sheep also went across the tiny bridge above us, thankfully before we had gone under it!!

That evening after a few more rapids we settled for the night on a u-bend in the river and set up camp by the riverside, perfect! Tents were up pretty quickly, the toilet consisting of a hole in the sand with a tent around it was set up, then we all sat round the fire chilling and drinking a cuppa or a beer from the local guy who came down with a bucket full to sell to us! This was bliss……then suddenly the heavens literally opened and for the entire evening and night we had a storm of torrential rain, thunder and lightening! The lightening was pretty close so a few of us hid in our tents, then we all joined together under a piece of plastic held up by an oar and Emma! Although I don’t think it is a good idea to hold metal in a storm but she said the guide asked her too!!……. The guides still attempted to cook us dinner and a few hours later at about 10pm when the guides were pretty drunk, we huddled under the small open shack eating an amazing chicken dinner!! They did well considering the torrential rain putting the fire out! We even had desert! I managed to get a crazy piccie of the lightening which was kinda cool but I was being a right girl and it scared the life out of me being surrounded by trees with it above us! Anyway thankfully we all woke up alive in the morning….

Our Final Day Rafting down the Maddi and Seti Rivers!

After awaking to no rain and packing up under a blue sky, we were off, rafting down the river. Again it was so peaceful you could hear a pin prick… Our guide who the girls had now named Johnny Depp, was rowing the 'floating kitchen’ and as we floated down he played on his recorder the most amazing chilled tune, it really was an hour none of us will forget, a really special moment…..

Then it was on to the hardest and most dangerous rapids of the journey!! The guides went ahead to work out the lay of the river etc... And with our history of rafting backwards in our boat I was getting quite worried!!! The rapid was dangerous due to the rather large rocks on route which if you got wrong and tipped the boat, it could end up being rather nasty…….. The guides went first with the floating kitchen and after a few hairy moments made it through ok! Then we were next…….

Ours didn’t go as smoothly, we managed to fall in the boat at the wrong moment at a time when we desperately needed to paddle hard as our guide kept screaming at us!! Then we ended up perched on a rock which as you looked at the tip over it at the raging channel below, it was very easy in this state to tip it….. We managed not to tip the boat, JUST and went down in a sideways unprofessional messy manner but finally made it through safely, thank god that was over!! Then we had the pleasure of watching the other group through who had some difficult points but did it a lot straighter and forward than we had…Ads was alive and well, I was happy!!

We then joined the Seti river, went through another rapid then everyone except me went overboard and floated in their life jackets through the last rapid to our final destination. It was wicked an amazing end to an incredible 6 days….and we still had Chitwan National Park to discover, this trip just got better and better!!

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