I’ve whitewater-rafted twice, once gratis and the second time for a not-too-painful fee. The freebie (thanks to the largesse of Universal Pictures) happened in Whitefish, Montana during a 1994 press junket for Curtis Hanson‘s The River Wild. The second occasion was a four-hour trek down the Schwarze Lütschine during a 2012 Switzerland vacation with Jett and Dylan. $150 each x 3 = $450 plus a tip for the raft commander.

I was thinking this morning about repeating the experience, perhaps on the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon later this summer. Easier imagined than done. For two people counting to-and-fro expenses plus air fare, hotel, meals and gas you’re looking at roughly between two and three grand. Three- to four-day camping treks are naturally a lot more. Almost every kind of adventure costs an arm and a leg these days. Even a three-day hiking visit to Yosemite and surrounded areas can do a fair amount of damage, especially if your wife or girlfriend is a luxury queen who doesn’t like roughing it at second-tier motels or campsites.

The bottom line is that Deliverance-type adventures cost more than you might think, and certainly enough to give pause to working stiffs trying to live within a reasonable budget. What did Jon Voight and Burt Reynolds pay those hillbillies to drive their cats to Aintree? $40 plus gas?