Monday, June 22, 2015
High – 96
Low – 76
Skies – Sun mixed with clouds. A stray shower or thunderstorm.
Wind – Light and variable
Warm! When the temperature is in the mid-70s when you wake up, it’s going to be a warm day! Right now as we lay in the shade of a cottonwood tree on a shimmering hot beach, it’s hard to believe we awoke this morning in an air-conditioned bedroom.
Layne Logue drove us from his home to the boat ramp, with a detour through Shipley’s Do-Nut’s drive-through. He treated us to their famous egg and sausage sandwich. I believe their breakfast sandwich is just as good as their donuts! (Remember, we enjoyed their donuts while in Greenville.) Shipley’s needs to expand their franchises to the north.
When we arrived at the boat ramp, we were encouraged to see the water level was about the same as it was when we arrived on Friday, maybe even a little lower. (However, the forecast is for a level increase of about a foot a day over the next few days.) We reloaded our boats and launched. Although we had just enjoyed a few days of relaxation, off the river, the moment the kayak is free from land and begins to float is familiarly calming.
Layne is quite the photographer, so he offer to take some pictures of us as we began our journey today on our last few hundred miles to New Orleans. (We are getting so close!) It’s rare for John and I to be in the same photo while we are in our boats, so these photos are a great memory keeper. He will also be sending some of the photos to John Wilkman to be used in his documentary of the Mississippi River. (See Instagram @ Separateboats)
Soon after we started paddling, a tow without a barge passed us, causing a larger than normal wake (without the barges in front, the flat shoulders of the tow are exposed, which pushes a lot of water). It was then John made an accidental funny. (Those innocent statements made that cause others to laugh, while you are left wondering what you said.) He said, as we coasted over the 4 – 5 foot wakes, “That will wake you up.” He was disappointed he hadn’t thought to say that on purpose.
John was full of accidental funnies today. The next one occurred when we approached a floating object (other than a tree). I thought it was a dead carp. Upon further investigation, we found it was a bucket. John said, “I think it’s still kicking.” I laughed so hard! I love my life with John!
One thing that surprised us today was the number of accessible places to pull off for breaks and camping, in spite of the swollen river. Last Thursday and Friday, we had a few anxious moments looking for places to take a break, which was not at all like the plethora of beaches we were used to.
On the beach of one of our stops, we saw a small random sand castle made with a sandcastle mold, without any footprints in the vicinity. How did the formation come to be? How long has it been there? Why were there no footprints? This was one of the few times we have seen any sign of another human having been on any of the beaches we have visited.
We are now relaxing on Middle Ground Island. This island still has a lot of beach front. I can’t imagine how much there is when the water is at its normal stage. We noticed that the shoreline seemed more accessible in the chute, which goes around the back of the massive island. So, we paddled about 1/2 mile into the chute and made landfall where the bar jutted out 60 yards from a small grove of large Cottonwood trees. It was a long way to carry the gear, but a problem we were glad to have since the high waters have covered most such areas. (See Instagram @ Separateboats)
Another warm night enjoying God’s beautiful scenery far from the sights and sounds of civilization, with only the chatter of the unique bird life breaking the silence.
Thanks for following our adventure. For photos and videos of the events mentioned in this daily journal, check us out on Instagram @ separateboats.
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