Day 18 (July 23) - Canyon continues
Weather definitely becoming a factor. Two hours of heavy rain late last night, 5C and thick overcast this morning - we prepare for another chilly day but at least the winds are slack. So unlike the Thelon River 2 years ago when we roasted! River narrows, cliffs seem to almost close overhead. Scout, line and lift. Lots of red paint left by those who’ve gone before, we leave our own blue and green marks on the rock
Huge thick sedimentary snake like bands course along the river. Fascinating area, we drift whenever the current allows our attention to wander. The twists and turns make for exciting paddling – beyond each corner is an unknown. I’ve made peace with the weather – the drizzle and rain add to the unworldly atmosphere. Blink blink to clear eye lashes of water again. Dead calm winds make it bearable.
Lunch is quick, we climb up, dance a bit, get the circulation going in our cold legs. It’s coming up to the end of the canyon, with the last known sets of rapids. The last few km before Stefansson Creek are gorgeous and quiet…water moves fast but with no surface disturbance. It’s like coming out of a compression chamber – tension ebbs, washed away…
Across from Stefansson creek we make our own “Hoodoo camp”. A level green area with few spruce trees offers shelter, a place to pull the boats up and interesting hiking opportunities. A popular place it seems with more cut tree stumps, old tent rings. A very fresh pile of grizzly bear scat, soft and green. We wonder, any black bears up here? Peregrine chicks scream as adults return with food. They are safely nested on top of the hoodoos, looking over our camp.