Anchored at the confluence of the Snake and Palouse Rivers, we awoke to sunny skies and glassy waters. We shuttled ashore to Lyons Ferry State Park and made the short drive to Palouse Falls State Park. These striking falls are 200 feet high and looked especially beautiful surrounded by springtime greenery. Yellow-bellied marmots grazing throughout the park made for some great opportunities for wildlife photography.

Returning to Lyons Ferry, we split off to explore the confluence more. While some guests took advantage of the calm day to enjoy kayaking, others went on a hike to look for birds along the shoreline. The rest cruised along the shore in our smaller boats to search the rocky cliffs for swallow nests.

After lunch, naturalist Jesse gave a presentation on the fascinating geology of this unique region. This was followed by our first daytime journey through a lock at Lower Monumental Dam. We all gathered on the bow to watch the remarkable lock process take place under the lovely afternoon sun. Once the gates opened, we regrouped in the lounge for a presentation by historian Bob, who recounted the remarkable story of Lewis and Clark and the Corps of Discovery.

Following Bob’s presentation, we returned to the deck to observe as National Geographic Sea Bird went through Ice Harbor Lock and Dam. As we continued our westward journey, we gathered in the lounge once more for our evening cocktail hour. A beautiful dinner followed shortly thereafter, and we reminisced about another beautiful day as the sun dipped below the horizon.