In the narrow parts of the canyon, the river touched rock walls on both sides. The smooth dark rock reached into the water like the legs of a dragon. We were walking through a fantasy novel.
I thought briefly about flashfloods. On my raft trip through the Grand Canyon the boatmen taught us that when we hiked through a slot canyon, we should always have an escape route planned. I looked around — and there was simply no place to climb up, especially in awkward dry pants and boots. "If there is a flashflood," I announced to my husband dramatically, "we are going to die."
I knew eventually we'd have to turn back, but I kept wanting to go farther. Each bend brought a new sight: a springfed waterfall, a huge boulder in the middle of the river, a curving side canyon, or a glimpse of sunlight shining down into the canyon.