Friday, October 21, 2016

Time for a redo.

           Remember when I was on the lake or in the woods every week and writing of my adventures and sharing Gracie stories? No! I don't either. It has been a long, long while and I'm missing those days. How do I say it - things, events, life, circumstances, maybe even the desire has slowly been wearing away this older man's enjoyment of living. Now that's real close to sad, changes should be made! Positive, get off your butt, relax and feel life once again, smell the fall air and feel the crisp mountain streams.

             While working on the day shift this week, I had one of those thoughts that usually get me into trouble. I thought, I need to take the canoe to the lake and do me some paddling, so I did!

            Eighty-seven degrees, sun shining, water warm, slight breeze, dipping the paddle into lake water. October 19, 2016, who would have thought it would be so warm and nice here in SC. I am very ready for cooler weather but will enjoy these random warm days. Leaves haven't yet begun to realize it's their time to become beautiful but they will and when they do they will be beautiful. I've seen pictures of the most gorgeous rolling hills in PA and know that our SC trees can do just as well.

           On the water stripped down to just my swimsuit; comfortable physically and emotionally. The steady stroke pushing the canoe forward relieves weary mind and body. One and a half hours watching the bow ease aside the water as I meander  along the crooked shoreline. The sun has long set and darkness is hurrying to fill her vacancy before I reach the boat ramp making for a black silent take out. Gracie would sigh and eagerly settle on the seat waiting for me to load the truck. I wear the headlamp, needed to strap the canoe tight and not trip over my own feet. I sit in the car in the dark and am creeped out by the absolute blackness, where is the half moon? It's not shining on this spot!

          Make it home OK, still haven't taken canoe off of car, might want to use it tomorrow.

          On the Water,




Monday, June 8, 2015

What happens when you poke a rattlesnake with a stick? Watch!

Not camping with a Timber Rattlesnake on Lake Jocassee!

Timber Rattlesnake!
          What a beautiful day to paddle north - on the wonderful Lake Jocassee. Nathan, my fourteen year old great-nephew and I have all afternoon and evening to do just that, so we do! The weather is mild and a light breeze is flowing across the water, excellent canoeing conditions. We are headed to the small camp site on the right side of the lake.This is a few hundred yards before the lake ends and the Toxaway River roars into the lake rushing around and over the rocky barrier which prevents canoes, kayaks, and boats from going any further upstream. A  suspension bridge crosses over the river and  allows the Foothills trail traffic to safely pass over. A smaller suspension bridge crosses over Toxaway Creek, both bridges bounce and sway when fourteen year old boys cross, as only they can! There is an official camp ground established next to Toxaway Creek and the lake, it hides under a shelter of tall trees. Tables have been set up and fire rings are provided. We hoped to sleep under the safety of the extremely thin rainfly and mesh covering of our individual tents on down the trail to the previously mentioned site, but someone else was setting up camp as we glided by.
First choice view!

          There is no place to tie off your canoe and easily unload all the "STUFF" needed to rough it in the wilds on the shore of Lake Jocassee, but somehow we managed. I had my sweet little heart all set on camping by the lake with a finished view of the day. With that thought in mind Nathan and I hiked over to our first choice just to see what was what, and we found the camp site all set up but no one home. So, we headed back and on the way back checked out another site near the lake but the view is not so good. I walked through this site and standing looking through the trees toward the lake ----- HOLD THAT THOUGHT ---


          So there I stand, staring at snake and snake is staring at me. Neither Nathan nor I have a camera with us, he runs to the stuff and gets both our cameras. I'm staying with snake so he doesn't crawl away - really what would I do if snake started crawling away? reach out and touch it! shivers just thinking about touching it! Nathan is back! He hands me my camera, but the snake has already turned his head away from us, what should I do?
Timber Rattlesnake
           Hey! Nathan get me a long stick and I'll poke it, when it turns around I'll get it's picture. If there is a hornet's nest close by I'll hit it too!   SO THAT'S WHAT I DO !!!

                                    Give me a few seconds to get the camera pointed correctly then



          In order to see my video of this beautiful snake you will need to highlight the above address and right click, then go down to Open URL and click on it. The video will show up and you can click on it to see what happens!  If that doesn't work for you just type in the address and hopefully that will work.

          So two things definitely not on my bucket list, getting snake bit and getting shot. I think either one would really hurt and cause confusion in my life. I missed a good opportunity to get bit and I am so thankful! God was good to me!

          Because of the snake being at the camp site we quickly decided to set up at the main camping area and enjoy our evening. Built a small fire and roasted some hot dogs, best hot dogs ever! Been a long time since I had had hot dogs cooked over an open fire. Rain started about eight-thirty and we scampered into the tents and stayed until morning light. Slowly paddled back to the boat ramp, no hurry, Nathan fished, no bites, relaxing day spent on a clam lake.

          A couple loons were on the lake, some fish jumped, we saw huge fish swimming under us, but nothing was more exciting than the rattlesnake. In the past I have seen bear on two different occasions and seen a few deer, a couple of otter followed me a short ways one day and a family of wood ducks scurried ahead of the canoe early one spring morning. Always good to be on the lake!

          More pictures of Mr. Timber Rattlesnake and then I close.

Pretty coloring.

Thirteen rattles?

                 In the woods or on the water,



                     As you can I was able to post just the snake video, will be easier for all to see!

                      This computer stuff hurts my brain!!