The Story of an Ammo Can: Ceiba’s First Guest Blog!

This week, Bob Whitson, who recently lead a trip outfitted by Ceiba, is contributing a great story from his recent trip through Grand Canyon.  We love hearing all of your stories from the river and the Canyon; send us your story and some pics and maybe we will post it on our site as another guest blog.  Plus if we post your story you will get a little Ceiba fun package!
So, without further ado here is Bob’s Story
The Grand Canyon Left Us All A Journal Entry

Back in 2004/2005, while on a private raft trip on the Colorado River, I left a journal, made by my wife Sue, in a small rocket box in an out-of-the-way location in the Grand Canyon. The only people who knew where it was were a few of the people on the raft trip with me. Most of us on that 2004 trip signed the outside of the ammo box and wished the journal good luck.
At the time, this is a picture of what the box and its contents looked like in its hidden location on the side of the river where it rested for nine years:
The contents were complete with the basic sustenance of life…SPAM, ARMOUR Vienna Sausage, a small bottle of Maker’s Mark, a handmade leather bound Journal and a writing pen. There it set, but for the blink of an eye from the Canyon’s perspective, hidden behind a rock 30 feet up and off the river.
The first person to find the stash was a hiker, Jim N., in 2007. On Thanksgiving of that year, he hiked down from Pt. of Bedrock canyon. After returning home, Jim sent me an e-mail saying he took a sip of the Maker’s and otherwise left everything as he found it. I have no idea how Jim found the little ammo can.
Almost every year after 2007, someone left at least one entry in the leather journal:
“Having a bitchin’ trip!” Sept, 2012
Peace, Rivers + “Love, we were here” Tracy & Luke 2010
Jim N. came back on a “G.C. Trip” 6/10
“Dropped into South Canyon, the Six Amigos.” April 12th 2008.
“It’s day 3, 26 days left, Obama is President” 2-28-09
“Not Swimming it this time, see you on a river Soon, Bob” 2-28-09
“Saw it all, Left only footprints, almost swept away.” March 2008
“Khol 13, Jhon 43 years old. Will be back next year. (P.S. next time leave more tequila) April 21st – 2013–this entry had a 1999 faux stamp that I had made and left in the ammo can. (Robert Dylan)


And another short comment, a chilling–hard to read journal entry–made with a pencil on 4/11/11:
“Crushed Can.”
So what could that be about?
Here is what I think happened:
In April, 2013 I went back through the Grand Canyon on a private trip with 15 good friends. We used Ceiba Adventures for our raft rental, food and shuttle–“The Whole Shabang.”
After stopping at Vasey’s Paradise for water our boat pulled over to see if the ammo can journal was still there. Here is what we found:
Most every thing was still in the can–sans Maker’s. The journal was in good shape and the SPAM was unopened.
I took the box and it’s contents out with me. After a little repair I will put the journal back in the canyon for future travelers–that’s where it belongs.
Take care,

Bob Whitson


  1. Reply
    Alex Sebastian says

    Any thoughts as to how the ammo can was so mutilated? Seems odd that anyone venturing into the depth of the grand canyon would deliberarly detroy such an offering. But I can’t reason that a flash flood could be responsible. Rock fall would not have consumed the whiskey.

    Great story!

  2. Reply
    Dinosaur River Expeditions says

    Great post man. I enjoyed reading your story, especially when you mentioned that you rafted in Colorado river. Thanks for sharing your story.

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