Tom continues to munch on his pre-cooked bacon for breakfast. It is probably just an oversight on his part not to offer me any. After traveling only a couple hundred yards up the trail, we find a much better campsite. Had we only known that last night. The trail soon starts upward toward the saddle. I am easily the slowest uphill person in our group, so I take a position at the back of the line. I rationalize this to the other guys by pointing out that this way I can meticulously guard our rear flank.
I was expecting the climb to the saddle to be a cakewalk. It is anything but that. I later calculate that it is about 500 vertical feet from the creek to the top. When I finally reach the top, I see the group is taking a break. Bob is feeling sick and needs to take an extended break. I decide to head on down and see what the campsite situation at the River is like.
The River is running a dark, chocolate brown color, something we fully expected with all the rain the Canyon got last week. I find a small lizard sunning himself by the trail.
When I get a little closer to the beach, I can see that a raft group is camped there. They offer me lemonade and a chair to sit in. Most of the group is out doing day hikes.
Keith comes into camp in a while and reports that Bob is now very sick and has remained uphill. Keith drops his pack and heads back uphill to carry Bob's pack and help him get down. In a little while, they both make it into camp. We prepare a place for Bob to lie down in the shade on my foam pad. One of the rafters loans Bob her pillow while we put a wet shirt on Bob to help cool him down. We are considering using the satellite phone to call for help. But this is Bob's lucky day as one of the rafters is a trauma nurse and promptly hooks Bob up to a saline solution iv. In about an hour, Bob is feeling infinitely better.
This also turns out to be Tom's lucky day as the rafters have an extensive raft repair kit including cleaner and cement. He sits down and begins to work on his boots. After a couple of hours, the final product is shown below.
One of the rafters, A. J., has made this entire trip on what is called a SUP, a Stand Up Paddleboard. I am impressed. He shot most of the rapids standing up, but says that some of the biggies, such as Crystal, required him to kneel down. I am now more impressed than ever. Wow!!
There is one open campsite near the water's edge that Bob and I share. Keith and Tom set up camp a little ways up the hill.
The rafters have been very nice and have given us several gallons of fresh water they got at Phantom Ranch. Our original plan was to spend two nights here, but the rafters are leaving tomorrow morning. That means we will not have access to any more fresh water and whatever filtering we do we will have to deal with all the silt issues from a muddy River. We decide to move back to Bass Camp tomorrow. That will allow us easy access to clear water from Shinumo Creek and cut down on our total distance from here back to the rim.
The rafters warn us that they are having a ten-ten-ten party tonight, which represents today's date. They have a good time, but do not stay up too late.