The second day of our trip, we got up very early to try to beat the heat. It was already quite hot at 6 a.m. but we set out anyway. By about noon we were really suffering and my son and I climbed a rather high bluff to try to get a birds eye view of the landscape HOPING that we would spot the town of Cherry Creek or at least a ranch or road that would lead us out of the river!
I brought my 12 year old daughter and 14 year old son along with me and it was so hot at 9a.m. that they ate breakfast in the water. The water itself was as warm as bathwater. They couldn't wear shorts or take a shirt off either, because the sandflies were so thick and biting so badly that we all wore clothing for protection. At the end of the day there were welts and blood from the bites - the flies were so awful! The scenery was probably quite nice but we mostly will remember the heat and flies and a bull that wouldn't move out of the way in the river. As much hardship as we seemed to have to endure, the kids remarkably commented that they were glad they did this trip with me, and the two who stayed home were even jealous of our "adventure". (It was truly nothing to be envied although we did come away with some good stories.)
One of the funniest things that happened was after we got out of the river. Our "rescuer", a native american cowboy, pulled our canoes out of the river with a lariat rope and put them in the back of his horse trailer. While we were chatting on the way back to Bridger, he told us that he had had to perform a "dirty deed" that morning - and was trying to eradicate prairie dogs from his pasture. Growing up in the Midwest I understand the nuisance these little critters can create to farmers and ranchers, but my friend from Ottawa, Ontario who has spent very little time outside a city, responded with the question, "Why? Were they attacking your cattle?"
Boy, did we look like idiots. I tried to cover for my urban friend but it was apparent we were out of our element.