December 18, 2009

Seasons' Greetings

No Grinch here.

This year has been good. I got on several new (to me) whitewater runs:

French Broad
Lower Yough
Ohiopyle Falls

and back on an old friend, with a new teacher- the Middle Ocoee with Jeff West.

AND the new (to me) flat water runs:
Cahaba Grants mill to Overton
Cahaba Helena to Alabama Small Boats
Buffalo River in Arkansas

I worked hard on my roll and will continue to do so.

On the vertical side of things, I participted in another Bridge Day,
Did Valhalla and Moses' Tomb for the first time,
and ascended Whitesides Mtn. for the first time too.

I finally bought a mandolin and I can play it pretty damn well.

A couple of 5k's, a new cat Tessa that I have nicknamed Lord Voldermort, and a lot more gray hair.

AND if I manage two more weeks I can also mark off a year Without A Major Accident, and a year without A Trip To The Hospital.


November 8, 2009

Jealous Guy

great song by Lennon

I was dreaming of the past.
And my heart was beating fast,
I began to lose control,
I began to lose control,

I didn't mean to hurt you,
I'm sorry that I mad you cry,
I didn't want to hurt you,
I'm just a jealous guy,

I was feeling insecure,
You night not love me any more,

I was shivering inside,
I was shivering inside,

I was trying to catch your eyes,
Thought that you were trying to hide,
I was swallowing my pain,
I was swallowing my pain.

August 6, 2009

Fun Stuff 2009

Dec. 31-Jan 2 New Years at Dneesh's.
Jan. 3 - Locust Fork. To 160. Level 2.8. In the Mag.
Jan 4 - Mulberry. Level 651 cfs.
Jan 10 - Mulberry. Level 2.5 feet. (1170 cfs. IIRC?) With Juliet.
Jan 13- Roll Practice, UAB pool.
Rolled 50 times with paddle, 4 times with handpaddles. In the Mag.
Jan 18 - Ridge 'riding' in Milo's car with Andy Z. and Dave C.
Jan 31 - Keel Mountain Ridgewalk. Qualified my find from last March as Wake Up Well. Reed found a 100 ft. pit! With Dave H., Jason W., Reed H.
Jan 27 - Roll Practice, UAB pool. Tried a zillion times to hand-roll the EZ.
Feb 4 - Turned 43
Feb 8 - Cahaba, Grants Mill Rd. to Overton Rd. Paddled with Dave H in his Blue Hole Canoe, Jeff H, Joel and Sissy in their flatwater kayaks. Pics HERE.
Feb 14 - BE&K 5K Run. in 34:44 minutes. That is 11:12 mile.
Feb 15 - Golly Hole, Cahaba ferry site. With Milo W. and Andy Z. Pics HERE.
Feb 16 - Ridgewalk, Lower Big Coon. With Dave H. Pics HERE.
Feb 20-22 - Guntersville Getaway/Cathedral Caverns. Pics HERE. More pics HERE.
Feb 28- Adam's Heart Run 5k. Got there late, had to catch up to the pack, still ran in 38 and some change.
Feb 28- Fossil Hunt. Pics HERE.
March 1 - Snow! Pics HERE.
March 7 - KofC 5k run.
March 7 - Mulberry Fork Canoe and Kayak race.
March 15 - ALF run of the Middle Tellico, 2.3 ft.
Hit my elbow and swam at the same spot I pitoned and swam two years ago!
March 22 - Locust Fork, level 2.8. With Dr. Wendy, Bubba, Tracy, Vander, Mark, Kenny, BJ, Mary Francis, Paul.
March 28 - Rickwood Caverns, lollygagging in Blount Co. With the Howell family and Dave and Edna C. We walked the nice trail on site at Rickwood Caverns, then toured the cave. Then we ridgewalked in the region of Smoke Rise Sink Cave.
March 29 - Oak Mtn. I visited the petting farm, they have baby lambs and goats! Then walked up the Treetop Nature Trail to the Wildlife Rescue Center and back.
April 5 -Mulberry Fork, level 2.5 ft. With the BCC. Pics HERE. Video HERE.
April 12 - Mulberry Fork, level 2 ft. In the XXX. With Joan S. and several of her friends.
April 19 - Mulberry Fork, level 750ish. In the XXX. With Joan, Vander, Tracy, Mary Francis, Mark. Pics HERE. Video HERE.
April 25 - Moved furniture into my new house.
May 2 -
Went to the Mulberry, it was at 6 ft, I declined to paddle it. Went to the takeout and waited for my friends, watched the 5-0 wave and talked to some locals. When my friends arrived Ann went to Murphy creek and ran it while we watched.
May 9-10 - Walls of Jericho hike, with the Bham Grotto. TR HERE. Pics HERE and HERE.
May 15-17 - Boaterchick Festival 09. TR: HERE. Pics HERE. Video HERE.
May 23 - Hiwassee, GCA trip. Video of Thread the Needle HERE. Pics HERE.
May 24 - Cartecay, GCA trip. To the DNR parking lot. Level 1.8 I think that's the old gauge. Video of Clear Creek Falls HERE. Pics HERE.
May 25 - Cahaba Helena to AlSmallBoats. With Dave and Valerie Howell, and Reed Hilton. Level 350ish at Mtn. Brook Gauge. Pics HERE.
May 30- Rolling practice Oak Mtn. Lake. With Panda. Tried and failed to roll a CR125.
June 3-7 - Buffalo River and Indian Creek hike
, Arkansas. Pics HERE. Trip report HERE.
June 27 - Banning Mills Zip Line Canopy Tour. Pics HERE.
June 28-July 3 - Carolina Canoe Club Week of Rivers. At Smoky Mountain Meadows Campground. 5 rivers in 5 days. Sunday - Hiwassee (with the BCC fast kayak class). Monday - Chattooga 3.5, level 1.37 on the bridge. Tuesday - Pigeon River with Watchis in her CR 125, Dneesh and Foamie George in the Blue Pig raft. Wednesday - Nantahala Ferebee through the falls. Thursday, French Broad River, level 1010.
Pics of Week of Rivers HERE. Friday, drove home. Saturday, BBQ at my brother Frank's house.
July 11- BCC pool party at the Hogan's.
July 12 - Coosa. In the EZ.
Level was supposed to be 6000, but felt low, and by the time we got to the Gap the locals told us it had been steadily dropping. At the takeout it was pitiful - 2000 or less.
July 18- Middle Ocoee. In the EZ.
Upper was releasing. Put-in below Grumpy, sneaked left of the rock at Broken Nose, left at Double Suck, bony left at Double Trouble. Dry hair day.
July 19 - Hiwassee. With the BCC Fast Class. 2 generators. Pics HERE. Video HERE.
July 26 - Coosa. In the EZ. Level 4000. Got on the Gap twice. With Jenni H, Renee C and Allen J.
Aug. 1 - Mulberry Fork. Level 800? And falling fast... With Vander H., Jenni H., Mark G., Joseph and Arlene, many many others. Surfed Training Wheels, Lunch Stop and tried to get some 360's in 5-0. Great summer treat to have local water! Pics HERE.
Video HERE.
Aug. 8-9 Summer Slam with the BCC. Sat. Tuckaseegee, Sun. Nanty.
Aug. 15 - Lesson Ocoee with Jeff West.
Aug. 15-16 Hiwassee. With the BCC Fast Class.
Aug. 22-23 Ohiopyle Falls Race Sat. In the Topo-Duo. Level 1.75. Lower Yough Sun. In a Wavesport EZG 50. Level 1.65ish.
Pics HERE. Videos HERE.
Aug. 29-30 Hiwassee. With the BCC Slow Class.
Sept. 12 - Lesson Ocoee with Jeff West.
Sept. 19-20 BCC Old Timers Trip. Hiwassee, EZ.
Sept. 27 Mulberry. In the EZ. With Glen, Heather and Joan. 5 combat rolls!
Oct. 8-11 TAG Fall Cave-In.
Pics HERE.
Oct. 16-18 Bridge Day at the New River Gorge. Pics HERE. Video HERE.
Oct. 24 Alabama Vs. Tennessee. Pics HERE.
Nov. 7 - Rappel at Weaver Pt., in Little River Canyon. Pics HERE.
Nov. 14- Rappel at Whitesides Mtn, N.C. Pics HERE.
Nov. 22 - Ladies' Trip to Tumbling Rock Cave. With Kim, Karen, Deirdra, and Michelle.
Pics HERE.
Dec. 5 - Alabama beats Florida for the SEC Championship. With my mom, at her house, just the two of us.
Dec. 5-6 Howdy Puff Fest at Moses' Tomb. With Jeff H, Deirdra H, Hazard, and various other cavers. I bounced Moses' Tomb pit for the first time on Sunday. 230'.
Dec 19 - Ranelli Christmas Party
Dec 21 - Locust Fork, with Team V.
Level 5.2 ft. In the Riot Magnum. High 47.
Dec 27 - Locust Fork. With Tracy G., Jenni H., Fred and Michael H. Level 4 ft. In the Riot Magnum. High 52.
Dec 31 - NYears Eve party at Leigh's. With the Pell City boys.

June 11, 2009

Buffalo River and Indian Creek Trail, Arkansas

Wed. morning I left Bham with several caver friends to Arkansas to paddle on the Buffalo River. It's about a 10 hr. drive. We arrived at the Mt Hersey take-out and set up camp.
Some of our group had to work and didn't start driving until 5:30 pm, so they got into camp in the middle of the night.
In the morning we packed up everything and drove to the put-in at Pruitt. An outfitter offloading boats and boaters at Hersey told us it was too low to run the section we chose. This proved well for us because we only encountered a couple of other boaters on our journey, yet never had to portage our boats.
I was paddling in the driver's seat of an Old Town canoe. The Buffalo is very beautiful with tall bluffs and lots of swimming holes.
A handy rope swing or two...
We camped on an island.

The water was cool and very very clear.

The next day we paddled the rest of the run back to Hersey where our shuttle vehicle remained.

We camped at Hersey the next two nights. It's a free camping spot with a pit toilet so it's not completely primitive. In the morning one person stayed behind at the camping spot and read, some went on their way to a crystal mine that sounded really cool - I have to get back to Ark. and check that out! and the rest of us went to Kyle's Landing to hike up Indian Creek and cave.
This is the camping area at Kyle's Landing. The scenery is quite gorgeous.

Heading up Indian Creek:

I will say that I believe that if Indian Creek were in Alabama it would have been paddled by some of our crazy-ass steep creekers - has it been paddled, does anyone know? A couple of guys on our trip had been there the year before when it had water, I would love to see it with water.
It is beautiful, just gorgeous...
There is a natural 'bathtub' in the creek bed.
scalloped rock channels in the creekbed...
A horizon line...
The trail got steeper here...

Somewhere around where the trail started to get steeper I smelled something really really bad, and wondered if it was a bear -aren't bears supposed to stink? Then a few steps further I wondered if it was 20 bears, then 20 dead bears... what I smelled was guano from a very large bat cave. It's a habitat for grey bats and is closed to access. Though I wouldn't access it even if it was mandatory to go further - that was some serious stink!
Past that the smell dissipated and we arrived at a beautiful cliff face, and had lunch there. Pictures:

After lunch we headed up further, through a little tunnel... to a feature called the Eye of the Needle.
This has a small cave in it, that a couple of folks did a short ' through trip' through. It had a handline in it, but we rigged it anyway.
A local caver, Chaz, showed up then. He had hiked from the top where he parked his car for our shuttle. He showed us the way to a nearby 146 ft. pit, called, "Ozark Adventure". Adventure it was, because this pit is located on a very steep slope with a drop-off that would culminate your earthly adventures for good. There wasn't a 'trail', it was just clutch the trees and roots on the side of the hill, move sideways, and pick the ticks off of you when you arrived at the pit. I pondered the wisdom of going to this pit as I recalled falling off of a cliff a year ago. But there we were... ;-)
At least the pit entrance had a little flat plateau.
They rigged the pit and some of the group rappelled it. I did not do this pit.
There is a rule right now because of white nose syndrome, that cavers from out of state not use gear in Arkansas that has been in a white nose state or a state bordering the white nose states. So these guys brought new helmets, new climbing gear and boots, and sewed harnesses so that they could do this pit and the other small cave.

After the pit bouncing we headed up and out of the Indian Creek gorge.
... to find that Chaz had ice cold watermelon for us!
One more night camping at Hersey, then the long drive home yesterday.
If you get the opportunity to do the Buffalo and/or hike Indian Creek, do it! It was a great trip.

February 13, 2009

How I put my shoulder back in socket after a Kayaking Shoulder Dislocation

This is how I quickly and effectively put my shoulder back in socket 5 years ago, and how I would do it if it happened to me again.

First, I either sit down in the river or float in an eddy. I stay in the water, preferably in good cold water, to lessen the pain. My knees are bent.
I clasp my hands and lock my fingers together.
Then, I grab whichever knee is on the same side as my dislocated shoulder with my clasped hands, and lean back. This extends my arm out enough for my shoulder to slide back into socket.
Takes about 5 seconds.

The longer my arm is out of socket, the worse the pain gets, until it is unbearable. So the quicker I get things right the better.

By setting my own shoulder back in socket, I risk nerve damage and/or blood vessel damage.
However, in a wilderness setting like a remote river run, I choose to alieviate the dislocation and pain, so I can get to safety quicker.