Thanks to The River Company, I got to raft the Salmon River on the 4th of July weekend just like my characters do in Love Finds You in Sun Valley, Idaho. Originally, my book was set in Sweet Home, Oregon, so it was a bit of a challenge to relocate the whole story once written. Experiencing the actual location is going to help make it much more authentic. Here’s some things I’ll be adding to the story after today…
The trees that grow there look like Christmas trees on stilts.
The jagged mountain range still has snow between its peaks in July.
How do you know if a rafting guide is in the room? He tells you.
Blackberry Rock–the rock one new guide hit, causing her to lose all her rafters, and even worse…one rafter lost her Blackberry phone. The guides now call it Blackberry Rock. (Think I might let one of my characters make this disastrous mistake.)
Redfish Lake had a year where no salmon returned to spawn. The following year, one fish did return. The media nicknamed him “Lonesome Larry.” (I find this symbolic for the situation my hero gets himself into.)
All in all, we had an amazing time–as you can see in the photo of my son. (That’s me in the background wearing a hat and doing all the work.) I will definitely be going back to raft the Salmon, and it’s not because I fell for a raft guide the way my character does…