Yes…. while in New Zealand we rode on JET BOATS!!! And, Oh. My. Goodness. are they FUN!!! WooHoo!!! While in Queenstown we had an afternoon to ourselves, so Richard & Deanne, Jim, Jon & Anna, myself & Bruce decided that this was a “must do” while it was available. And did we enjoy our time on the boats!
Driving into the canyon we could see the river peaking between boulders… teasing us. “Is this where we’re going to be on a boat?” we wonder. The river looked very shallow and flowed very, very close to the boulders; in fact, it flowed right up to the edge of said boulders. And yes, it was where we were going to be.
Our ride started with getting into our life jackets… which, some had never worn. It was interesting to see the bewilderment on faces in trying to figure out the straps and fit. But, patience prevailed and soon we were all set to go.
We boarded the boat and listened to a brief safety talk. Then we proceed to pull away from the dock and suddenly we are flying down the river. Flying down the river headed right for those BIG boulders I mentioned! But no fear… we didn’t hit them. Actually, as my husband explained later, the water that the jet boat is pushing away from itself becomes a bumper between the boat and the boulder, so unless the boat loses momentum it just doesn’t hit the boulders… the water pushes it away from them and you proceed on down the river.
As I mentioned the river was shallow… very shallow, sometimes only 3 or 4 inches deep. The boats bottom is flat and meant to take a beating and that it did as we skimmed over the river rocks below us. Bumpity, bumpity, bump as we crossed over rocks worn smooth by the river and then SPLASH as we do a quick 360° turn in the middle of the river. Laughter, shrieks and great big smiles as we do several more on our altogether too short of a trip.
Yes, jet boating was thrilling. Something that I do want to do again (and again?) and feel so privileged to have experienced it in such a place of beauty as Shotover Canyon.