Grand Canyon Float #1: Adventurers on Vacation

Photograph by Joe Riis

When I think of classic adventure here at home in the U.S., I think of climbing El Cap and rafting the Grand Canyon. They’re accessible and doable to many, but they are still pure adventure to the core—the kind of experience most all of us are looking for.

Photograph by Joe Riis; From left: Joe Riis, Michael Zarecky, Sarah McNail-Landry, Hillery Lynn, Erik Boomer, Hannah Tay, Luc Strickland, Chris Valiante, Andy Maser, Jeff Jewell, Seth Carson, Maggie Smith, Jenny Nichols, Emilene Ostlind, Eric McNair-Landry

This is the first live post from a group of professional adventurers on vacation—a vacation together down the Grand Canyon for pure fun … and sending live updates and pictures via satellite connection along the way.

Photograph by Joe Riis

Here we are, 16 young folk spending 21 days floating 280 miles though one of the most spectacular canyons around during the best time of the year to be here. We’re an eclectic bunch—a couple pro kayakers, polar explorers, National Geographic photographers and filmmakers, river guides, artists, Wyomin’ outlaws, and SoDak flatlanders. National Geographic connects us, and the river brings us all together looking for a grand time. This is what we do when we are not on assignment and traveling to some far flung place. The adventure has begun; come along for the next three weeks of a Grand raft trip.




  1. Ian Strickland
    North GA
    September 24, 2012, 8:10 am

    Great post, Joe! Looking forward to hearing the stories when y’all are back!

  2. Jeanne Riis
    Pierre, SD
    September 24, 2012, 10:26 am

    Wow! We look forward to more pics and stories at the cabin.

  3. Jerry & Paula Hunsley
    Pierre, SD
    September 24, 2012, 12:00 pm

    Looks like great fun, beautiful pictures, wish we were younger!!

  4. joanne strickland
    Alpharetta, ga
    September 24, 2012, 3:45 pm

    Love the pictures. Can’t wait for stories around the campfire at Fall Y’all!

  5. Nancy Tofte
    Madison, MN
    September 24, 2012, 4:28 pm

    Looks like a wonderful adventure!!! Water looks nice and calm but imagine that will be changing. We look forward to seeing your photos and hearing about the adventures. Be careful.!

  6. Anne Pike-Tay
    Salt Point, NY
    September 25, 2012, 8:34 am

    Beautiful! Enjoy every minute of it and keep up the great post.

  7. Patty Bormann
    Bloomington, MN
    September 25, 2012, 2:55 pm

    Awesome! What fun to be with friends and enjoy nature. I look forward to seeing you and your pictures this fall. Be safe out there.

  8. Barb Smith
    Manchester, VT
    September 25, 2012, 8:31 pm

    Beautiful. Thank you for sharing the photos. Look forward t o more. Have fun.

  9. nancy
    Pierre, SD
    September 27, 2012, 5:17 am

    What i wouldn’t give! Have fun and be safe!

  10. Austin Woody
    September 27, 2012, 2:10 pm

    It sounds like you guys aren’t even partying that hard.

  11. Kate Breen
    Iqaluit, Nunavut
    September 28, 2012, 5:07 pm

    Nice post. Party harder!

  12. Kelly & Mary Lauran
    United States
    September 29, 2012, 8:33 pm

    Maggie! We are sooooo envious sitting here in the living room. Live it up, girl! Bring back stories. <3 <3

  13. Cindy Vix
    Olathe, KS
    September 29, 2012, 8:37 pm

    Following your story as my daughter, Karie, is with a group of 11 that started their 21 day journey on 25th I believe, and they aren’t blogging 🙁 Jarod Rhodes is her rafting guide! You all be safe and enjoy the majesty!!

  14. Bill Griffin
    September 30, 2012, 6:34 am

    Bring my kiddos home safe.

  15. […] adrenaline-seekers but are photographers and storytellers. You can see first hand how a 21-day floating trip through 280 miles of the Grand Canyon through the writer’s ability to be able to vividly talk […]

  16. Joann Robinson
    October 6, 2012, 9:13 pm

    Wish I were young and adventurous. Be safe

  17. Amy Elgersma
    Iqaluit, Nunavut
    October 10, 2012, 5:23 pm

    Sounds like you guys are having a blast. Can’t wait to hear about it! The dog team is doing great. Polaris has two pups …see you for dog sledding season??

  18. Taylor Phillips
    This Wyoming Place We Call Home
    October 10, 2012, 6:50 pm

    You dirty devils! Have fun down there!!! Don’t let that beer get warm…