After leaving the waterfall we made our way back towards the elephant camp where next to it is the bamboo rafting place. We were told to leave all our belongings in the bus and not to wear our shoes, we thought this might have been a bit much as we only expected to get our feet a little wet. We were very wrong!
The bamboo rafts were approximately 10-12 meters long and tied together with, what appeared to be, old cut up bike tires! Our little Thai guys shot them in the water and we went 5 per raft with the Thai guy leading at the front steering us with a large piece of bamboo he stuck in to the water and one of us at the back steering from there in the same fashion. The rafts were absolutely crawling with bugs as we set off and so jo wasn't sat for long and made sure everyone knew!
I started off steering at the back which i thought was going to be a breeze but it really wasnt. The first real attempt i made to push us away from the waters edge i got my bamboo stick wedged between two rocks so it pinged me back. Trying to keep your balance when stood up was ridiculously hard anyway but this sent me absolutely flying and i ended up with my head dunked under the water flat on my back! Jo nearly wet herself as did everyone else on the two rafts! Not the best start and pretty much immediately after we got our photo taken, i was drenched and jo was in the middle of weeing herself so it obviously turned out to be a stunner!
As we continued the Thai guys were really fun and set about drenching everyone and rocking the rafts, it was such a good laugh. On the other raft one of the English girls had a go at steering the front which is really hard and she ended up steering through trees and in to rocks shooting everyone forwards and catapulting her head first in to the river. Really good fun. We stopped at one part of the river to swing from a Tarzan rope set up by the Thai's. Being the regular adventurer i am, i went first, however, they didn't mention the fact the water was only about a foot deep and upon landing on my bum i was still sat upright in the water with a ton of sand now in my shorts! We also tried to walk against the current and let ourselves float back down lazy river style in a chain of people, we didn't get very far up.
Further down the river we came to some rapids and by this point the Aussie guy was steering the front of our raft and he was asking if we were seriously go through them which we were! he didn't have a clue what he was doing so our raft tipped up and we all went flying which was fun, jo hurt her leg a little though. She is fine just a little bruise. Just through the rapids we stopped again and the Thai guys showed us some massive rock ledges we could jump off. The ledge was about 25 feet high and although i crapped myself a little i still went for it. It wasn't the deepest water to jump into probably a little under 2 m but everyone was fine and it was soooo exhilarating. I did it twice and my arms were absolutely killing because i really slapped them off the water :-(
Our trip finished just a bit further down and we headed back to Chang mai. It was such a good experience and i don't know how we managed to fit it all in to one day but we definitely wont forget it!
On the night we met up with Clair and her friend Briany for some food at our favorite Mad Dog sports bar then went out for some cocktails and beers.
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