With kayaks and two rafts down the Grand Canyon: A dream come true, the best challenging waters - said some. Murky waters, muddy camping with rattle snakes in a cell phone free zone without warm showers - said others. Norbert Blank - photographer, chief guide and organizer of the adventure paddles down the Colorado River with 28 guests and guides.
It can be called a muddy, brown spectacle from hell :-). But objectively the Colorado offers manegeable rapids: short rapids are followed by pools and smooth water passages. The rapids are relatively easy and they follow easy lines, almost "simple" routes without challenging directional changes.
As a bystander, kayaking as an amputee sounds impossible or suicidal. But what Klaus Riester lacks in body weight, stability and mobility he compensates with crutches, skill, strength and last but not least, will. An this especially when you want to spend 12 days, like Klaus, paddling down the Colorado. His biggest paddling dream and highlight of his paddling career was to go down this pristine natural wonder. So he went and made it.
Photographer Norbert Blank has been relying for years on Exped gear on his expeditions. This time with heaps of our waterproof drybags, backpacks, but also tents and sleeping bags. These made for cozy camps. The 3-season tents withstood wind and thunderstorms without problem. And setup was swift and easy, a big advantage during daily setup and tear down.
Not much effort needed to move the GEMINI III tent to a better spot.
Just find a nice spot and set up the canopy on its own in good weather. That's all you need to keep scorpions and snakes at bay. The large mesh panels make it breezy on warm nights and allow full view of the night sky. And should the weather change, just clip on the rainfly.
The deluxe outdoor bed DEEPSLEEP SYSTEM: Mat, sheet and down comforter create the perfect cozy camping bed.
The FOLD DRYBAG ENDURA works great as a packsack: durable and waterproof, keeps gear dry and clean.
The various Exped packs that went along on the trip served the kayakers well on their hikes, climbs and trips into the side canyons: compact, lightweight and waterproof. Fit neatly into the kayaks when not in use.
Feel like a Grand Canyon adventure of your own? Photographer and adventure organizer Norbert Blank looks forward to your interest:
Thank you for your images and feedback, Norbert!