Update: post 26.
Enjoyed 5 nights and 6 days on the Eel river in Northern California with my Dad and his buddy. We rafted about 72 miles, 12 per day.
The rapids were class 2, but some were challenging anyway. We spent some time pushing the boats over rocks, and there was some tough headwind to paddle into. The weather was beautiful and we were able to swim each day and move on to another beach. I cooked all the meals for the group, that was fun, I figured out some new recipes.
I forgot my energizer headlamp at home, but didn't need it because it was the summer solstice and not a lot of darkness. I brought along these 5 lights:
Streamlight Lux. Jr. (Not great for up close or in the tent, but easy to find glow powder under lens).
Inova X1 v.2 (One of my favorite lights.)
Dorcy 3 led 1AA light (Similar output to X1, longer runtime)
Nuwai 1aa (backup)
Green Infinity task light (Why not)
I only used my light to read in the tent for about 1/2 hr., and to look for animals in the camp at night.
Here's my dad running the rapids.
We set some stones upright:
Have to make sure all the gear is tied in tight!
It was great to get away from civilization for a while. For one week we get to just "go with the flow". No phones or tv, just the music in your head.
I read a great book, too, "Why Things Break", which I picked up from the library.
The gorillapod came in super-handy. I was able to set my camera down with confidence and program some shots I would never have gotten otherwise. It is so useful.
All photos are taken with my newish canon A610 digital camera. I took 12 AA batteries on my trip (3 sets) but only used 2 sets of batteries. I changed batteries on the 4th day so I wouldn't get caught with a dead camera. There was probably more juice in that set, but I went to a fresh pack anyway. I was able to review my photos and delete the unwanted ones without worrying about running out of power.
I would recommend the Canon A610; it's a great cheap digital camera with manual modes that work perfectly. I'm hoping to upgrade to a camera with either time-lapse features and/or an infra-red remote.