From Green River National Park to the top of the Delicate Arch in Arches National Park I, Sharyti Henriksen, traveled with nine other companions 100 miles in five days. We started at Green River National Park and canoed for four days 68 river miles, through extreme heat, over 113 degrees, and clouds of abnormally big mosquitoes. We would camp each night after traveling anywhere from nine to twelve miles along the bank of the River. For much of the day we would float down the river with our canoes connected together and swim alongside them so that we could stay cool. One night in the middle of our canoe portion of the trip the mosquitoes were so bad that we were slapping each other to get the mosquitoes of our backs. We couldn’t even eat without swallowing a mouthful of mosquitoes with our food so we decided to hike up the Bowknot which runs along the Green River. It took us about 45 minutes and all we took was our sleeping bag but it was worth it. When we reached the top the pleasant noise of silence overcame us as there were no mosquitoes to swat from each other. We slept peacefully that night on the hard ground and hurried to pack up camp the next morning to get away from the mosquitoes. Camping along the Green River we had to practice strict Leave No Trace (http://www.lnt.org/) which means we had to cart everything in and out including our waste and you know what. Through those first days we came closer and were able to appreciate our surroundings and modern day conveniences more. Being able to sleep outside and look up at millions and millions of starts was incredible. We were so far from civilization it felt we had been transported to a different time. The rest of the trip was fun and a great learning experience that many bug repellents will not work on the Green River mosquitoes. We finished up the 68 miles, four days after we started, at Mineral Bottoms, Green River. From there we biked on the fourth day 30 miles in under 6 hours to the Boys Scouts of America Camp Entrada. Two of my companions had serious accidents, one of which included a dislocated knee and ripped up shoulder, but they continued on to bike the rest of the way with us as we had started out our trip together and wanted to finish together. We were sore, itchy, and exhausted once we arrived to Camp Entrada but were very grateful for the showers we were able to receive. The next morning we got up at 3:30 am to go hike two miles to Delicate Arch in Arches National Park. We got up so early, even though we were all worn down from the week’s events, so that we could watch the sunrise at the top of Delicate Arch. The whole trip was trying and extremely hard at times but turned out to be a life changing experience. Through the hard times we faced as friends and companions we were able work together and learn to trust each other more fully. Many people have called me crazy for traveling those 100 miles but I say it would have been crazy not to have. Even though it was hard at times I would not trade those 5 days of adventure for the world.
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