The rain was relentless and the river rose accordingly. The cloud cover was dense. Thick like a pea soup. The power a river possesses as it cuts and weaves through the landscape of the earth is truly remarkable. So remarkable that man has harnessed this power. Who said that was a good idea?

A river like spring gushed out of a basalt wall, liking a bleeding aquifer. I could only imagine what the headwater streams flowed like as the deluge continued. Nestled riverside in the trees and enjoying a bit of hot food, we relaxed watching mother nature sweat as logs and other debris traveled the artery. It was time to continue down river as the power of this river looked to be increasing. We boarded the drifter and shoved off.

At this point, the river was not dangerous under the guise of an experienced oarsman. The water flowed like wonka chocolate. Steep canyon walls of basalt and orchard like natural groves of scrub oak painted the riverside.

The water lapping against the side of the drifter was almost rhythmic. Therapy comes in many forms for the open minded individual. There is something peaceful about a river that is changing. The cloud cover continued its ‘rain on the parade’ with no end in sight. It seemed as we were the only ones alive. Not a sole to be seen, nor a road to be heard. Mother nature has a way of humbling humankind. Man has tirelessly tried to control the natural dynamics of the earth, ultimately to no avail. There was no controlling the river we were on as it was swelling from top to bottom. Sheer power with no on/off switch. Beautiful yet unpredictable. The only taming would be from the hand of the earth

The landscape was full of wildlife yet they were hidden; tucked away under a canopy weathering the storm. Brother bear, in his infinite wisdom, was close to a long sleep. The deer were hunkered and hidden knowing they were easy targets while their sense of smell compromised. The cougar, hungry and stealthy, was most definitely on the prowl. The golden eagle and his bald cousin were drying wings in anticipation of pursuit. And us, we were floating one of mother earth’s arteries surrounded by the pulse of nature.

Progress was quick. Not like nascar, but resembling a road rally. The dodging of logs and other debris was becoming a nuisance. The precipitation lightened for only a short time, only to resume at its previous pace. This day was not made for photography, yet it was stunning in a gray way. I felt lucky to witness such an awesome display of nature. It was beautiful. Not picture like beauty, but life like beauty.

Where does the day go when you are surrounded by natures simple song. It sails by, as does the hawk; almost surreal. How fortunate we are to experience life face on. I for one, will never quit.