Kid's-Eye View: Montana

Riding and Rafting Yellowstone
By Will Peregoy (with help from his mom, Alice Cary)
  |  Gorp.com
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On Monday morning we drove to a ranch to go horseback riding. I had ridden a few ponies, but never a real horse.

I was nervous at first. Those horses are big! But they put me on a gentle horse named Bandit right at the front of the line, behind the wrangler. We led the way up into the mountains. Dad was way in back of the line.

We saw a baby bunny and a moose. After a while on Bandit, I didn't feel as nervous. I liked the ride, even though it was scary at first. I'd like to do it again.

Rafting the Yellowstone River
A few days later we did another exciting thing: We went white-water rafting on the Yellowstone River. I had been canoeing before, but never rafting.

The water was really cold, but the sun was shining, so we didn't need wet suits. First our guide explained what the trip would be like and what we were supposed to do. The adults did all the paddling.

All of us got into a big inflatable raft. I sat in the middle, beside my mom. We started paddling and there was our first rapid. SPLASH!

Boy, did I get wet. It was like getting hit in the face by a giant wave. The raft rocked up and down like a roller coaster. And that water was freezing.

The water would be calm for a while and then we'd hit another rapid. Then my mom told me we had passed all of the big rapids and the rest of the trip would be calm.

One time our leader, Dan, reached into his pocket to get a mint. Somehow he lost his balance and fell in the water. Dan was laughing and swimming, but he looked cold. Then his daughter, Kasey, who is 11, and another girl jumped in to swim with him. Nobody stayed in too long, though. It was too cold!

When the rafting was over, Traci, Reno, and Ryan were waiting with a pizza and brownie picnic right on the river.

Kids in Hot Water
We had lots of fun in Montana. We went to Yellowstone Park and saw buffalo and elk and bighorn sheep and baby coyotes. We even saw a grizzly, but lucky for us, he was far away.

One night Traci took Mike and me and the other kids to eat cheeseburgers and ice cream while the adults went to dinner. Another night we got to stay in the hotel and eat dinner by the pool while the adults went to a fancy restaurant. The water in the pool came from a hot spring in the mountain, and the water was 94 degrees. It felt like a bath. There was another small pool that was even hotter: 104 degrees!

My mom and dad say this was the best vacation they ever had. I liked it too. My favorite part was rafting.


Published: 28 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication
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