Monday, 28 July 2014

Date Night in Paris - Night Rafting on the Grand River

Six friends ready for rafting, will they come back alive?  Read on to find out...
The sun was just starting to set as we watched a couple of fisherman try their luck near the bottom of the modest waterfall. I could still taste the delicious barbecue sauce from my tender rack of ribs I enjoyed at renowned Camp 31 rib house earlier. Our group had been anticipating date night for quite a while, finally we were standing on the banks of the Grand River in Paris, Ontario. Our guide, Nick from Grand River Rafting, approached us with a smile, he knew right away that he had a special group on his hands and sensed that the bond was strong.  He was right and we were starving for a romantic adventure.

My eyebrows, Alison and Nick having a great time together
Sam and Lianne doing a J-stroke
The gentle current took hold of the raft, and as we set out on our star gazers drift (one of 11 special offers from Hamilton, Halton, and Brant's Our True Nature) we found ourselves in many separate conversations and telling jokes. In no time Nick had become our seventh wheel. He would occasionally interrupt, politely of course, to educate us as on the constellations and planets visible in the clear night's sky (we were fortunate enough to see Venus and Mars), and to steer us to other focal points along the river banks.

This is the rear of Paris' downtown core and yes, those are riverside bars and patios!
Terrina and myself let everyone row while we took a photo together

The total raft ride takes about three hours to complete, depending on current, how much you row and how many stops you make. We made two stops to explore the true nature of the river bank. On the first stop, we drank from a natural spring that trickled down to the rivers edge, while on the second and final stop, we explored an old gypsum mine shaft that reminded me of a petite version of the bat cave.

Sam having a drink of the fresh spring water.

Ed and Sam in the hobbit sized bat cave
Ed and Terrina exiting the gypsum mine
By the time we finished our second adventure the sky had darkened and we could no longer see very far ahead of our modern, spacious raft, which made it all the more exciting. The stars weren't the only attraction of the evening as the firefly's put on a show of their own. A pleasant surprise that rivaled the sights, no bugs! Keeping our crew free from bugs while enjoying the warm summers eve definitely upped the romance factor.

When the night was finished we rowed the raft onto shore and awaited the van to pick us up and take us back to our cars. We were all smiles as we welcomed the warmth of the shuttle van (it cools off considerably in the last hour of the trek so be sure to bring a sweater), and while not a physically demanding trip, our weary heads yearned for rest .With our adventure complete we retired to the nearby Hampton Inn (when booking mention Grand River Rafting and get a discount) where the beds were as heavenly as the evenings company.


  1. Replies
    1. It absolutely was Helen! Thanks for the comment

  2. This looks like a fun and exciting trip. It is always nice to travel with good friends.

    1. The friends will make an outing that much better! Cheers Bente!

  3. I'm so jealous!! Looks like an amazing night!

    1. It was an Amazing Night Jordyn! Thanks for reading. :)