A few years ago I wrote an article for a local newspaper called “Spending quality time with your kids.” In it, I reviewed some compelling research that such a pursuit produces long-lasting and happy memories for children and is necessary for children’s proper growth and development. Unfortunately, like many, I sometimes lose sight of my priorities and become consumed with activities that aren’t family related. Earlier this summer, I said, “Enough!,” and decided to take my twins on a trip.
Having had a great previous experience with Red River Adventures (www.redriveradventures.com), I contacted them again and asked for the best option for a dad and two eight-year-old sons. They recommended the Fisher Towers Overnight experience.
A few weeks later, we arrived at the Red River Adventure office in downtown Moab, were fitted with PFDs (personal flotation devices—formerly known as life vests), got instructions, and boarded a bus which took to the Upper Colorado River Scenic Byway (SR 128). “River Road,” as the locals call it, is described as “spectacular” by National Geographic Magazine. After passing through the Castle and Professor Valleys, we launched at the historic Dewey Bridge. The boys spent some time in the rafts, but they much preferred the inflatable kayaks (also known as “duckies”). I ended up doing most of the rowing, but the kids enjoyed it so much, it was worth the workout.
After running the Onion Creek Rapid, we briefly disembarked on shore for a tasty lunch of turkey wraps. The guides became instant heroes to my boys when they informed them that they could eat as many cookies as they wanted. In addition to being great with kids, the guides were hilarious, informative, and skilled.
In the evening, we camped across from Castle Valley and Fisher Towers on a spectacular Colorado River beach. Fisher Towers are made of sandstone and caked with red mud stucco. The Towers, named for a miner who lived near them in the 1880s, are world renowned as a subject for photography and rock climbing. Dinner consisted of spaghetti, salad, bread sticks, and gourmet cheesecake. After dinner, the boys had a blast exploring, climbing rocks, and hanging out with me on the beach. Later that night we climbed into sleeping bags and a tent provided by our guides. Story time was interrupted by a lightning storm. We opened the tent door to watch, but even a temperamental Mother Nature couldn’t keep the boys awake for long.
After a great night’s sleep, we awoke to the smell of breakfast—sausage and egg sandwiches, yogurt and orange juice. We launched again onto the River. Day 2 saw the majority of the seven Class 2 rapids—which made the boys happy. Later that afternoon, we disembarked, had a nice lunch, boarded the buses, and headed back to Red River headquarters.
It was a quiet ride home, as the boys fell asleep before we had left the city limits. When they awakened a couple of hours later, they asked when we were going back to Moab.