My name is Hannah Musgrove and I’m ten years old. I’ve been kayaking for about a year (I learned how to roll last summer).
Last weekend my family, some friends and our dog Rosie went on a trip to paddle the Merced river in Yosemite through the valley. We put in at a beach just below the bridge at the entrance to North pines campsite. My dad and a friend did the shuttle and I hung out with my sister, a friend, my mom and our dog and we buried ourselves in the sand and made each other mermaid tails.
Our dog Rosie HATES water and buses. We couldn’t find anyone to take care of her so she had to come on the trip. She was fine on the raft but when we were on the beach, she was terrified. She started shaking, put her tail between her legs and looked very uncomfortable about what was going on.
Our friends were in a raft but my family were all kayaking. There were only very small rapids right from the start so there was nothing to worry about and we could look at the amazing scenery, which was Half Dome, Yosemite Falls and we took out by El Capitan.
All along the whole trip there was incredible scenery. There were lots of fallen trees in the river but they were easy to get around. You go under lots of bridges and there were a lot of people watching us.
At the take out, I did a roll because I was bribed with ice cream. It was my first roll of the year and the first in my new boat (Fun 1.5). It was really cold and I got a brain freeze.
My sister (who just turned 9) tried a roll but didn’t make it because she couldn’t think properly as it was so cold. She got an ice cream for trying.
Paddling or even being near the Merced is an amazing experience that I hope you will let yourself enjoy. The scenery is amazing and can be seen by walking, driving or biking through Yosemite valley but in my opinion, the Merced river is the best way to see it. I think think that being on the river adds to the experience.
Happy Paddling! Hannah
All words and images copyright California Women’s Watersport Collective 2018. All rights reserved.