Each summer my family travels to Wyoming and spends one week next to the Snake River. We have been doing this for thirty years. Our family has acquired our own boats, life jackets, paddles and wetsuits. We camp alongside the river and each day we get up when the birds sing, eat breakfast, pump up the boats and head down the 8-mile stretch of river between Hoback Junction and Alpine, Wyoming where the white water rapids exist. After pulling our boats out at Sheep Gulch, we head back to camp and eat lunch. We sit around and relax for a few minutes play card games and then load up in the cars, to do it all again, in the afternoon.
At supper time, we make dinner in dutch ovens, make s’mores over the campfire and play mafia or more card games. It is a dreamy week-long adventure. All four of my children have learned where the rapids in the river are and have become excellent guides. Each trip down, they look for a new rapid called Double D since there are two waves that can take you out at any moment. Shark or Haircut Rock can be treacherous if you are not riding the inside of the current. Then comes the wire where water fights are a plenty with water guns or a gentle push.
Then the fun begins!
With Class 2 and 3 rapids at Kokomo, Big Kahuna and Lunch Counter the river becomes a ride. My favorite is Rope. It is a very narrow stretch of the river with long rolling waves that last for much longer than any other of the white water on the Snake River. Then comes Champagne. This is a family favorite, as it is tradition to ask newcomers if they have ever had champagne, if not, we let them take a drink in the brilliant, green river with the amazing champagne bubbles popping up to the service.
The ride is about to end with cliff jumping, just around the river bend, and then Rock Garden with its large boulders and small rocks that need to be navigated expertly to give you the best ride. All of this time in nature is exhilarating to my soul. I come alive and am renewed with the sense of awe and wonderment of God’s beautiful creations.
One of the best parts of the river, for me, is the food! Before we head to Wyoming, I make Homemade Granola. Rolled oats, sliced almonds, sesame and sunflower seeds mixed with honey and canola and then baked. It is fresh and tasty on premium vanilla yogurt. It is available every morning along with French toast with white syrup, or Omelets, or morning sausage muffins or blueberry pancakes. I hope you find a time to make this delicious granola and share it with your favorite campers!
Let me know on Instagram or Pinterest if you make this.
Post a picture and tag me @dinasdiner. I want to know how it turns out.
- 6 Cups Rolled Oats
- 1 Cup Sliced Almonds
- 1 Cup Sweetened Coconut
- 1 Cup Unsweetened Coconut
- 1/2 Cup Sesame Seeds
- 1/2 Cup Sunflower Seeds, roasted and salted
- 1 Cup Honey
- 1 Cup Canola Oil
- 2 Tbsp Vanilla Extract
- 1 tsp. Almond Extract
- 1 Cup Raisins
- 1 Cup Dried Cranberries
- Mix the first six dry ingredients in a large bowl.
- Heat the honey and oil on the stove in a pan to make it easy to pour. Drizzle over the dry ingredients and mix well.
- Spread on a large cookie sheet and bake at 350°. Every 15 minutes take the granola out of the oven and mix it up with a large pancake turner. Bring up the uncooked ingredients from the bottom to the top. Bake this for an hour stirring every 15 minutes.
- While the granola is baking for the last 15 minutes, mix the raisins, cranberries, vanilla, and almond extract together in a very large bowl.
- Customize this recipe. Add your favorite dried fruit, cherries, apricots, maybe try some different nuts, walnuts, pecans, etc. or leave all the dried fruit out. No dried fruit is my daughter's favorite variation.
- Once the granola is done cooking, pour it into the large bowl and stir in the extracts and dried fruit. It will sizzle as it hits the wet ingredients. Stir fast.
- Store in a plastic bag. Will keep for three months.
- TIP – I love to serve this over Western Family Vanilla Yogurt. It is thicker than most. The creamy texture of the yogurt is perfect with this granola.