Friday, November 11, 2011


click photos to enlarge
People sometimes ask me, "what do you do out there alone in a canoe?  You fish, or hunt?"
I used to get that a lot.  It seems that folks just relate a canoe to hunting and fishing.  I've tried to explain my motivations for canoe paddling to friends and saw the look of boredom slowly creep into their eyes as I explain the ability of canoe paddling to transport my mind and body out of the present and into the past.   They just don't get it.   In short;  its the most relaxing thing I have ever done.  Anyway;  I stopped trying to explain it long ago.  Now, when I come back to the shore and the guy who is fishing at the waters edge says, "do any good?"
I simply reply, "didn't catch a one", and go about my business.
I paddle a canoe for the joy of paddling it.  It's that simple.  I like to feel the forces against the paddle blade as I pull back on the shaft, and the resultant forward movement of the boat.  I like to control my direction with that stick with a flat end on it.  The operation of a canoe is simplistic in nature.  Pull the paddle back against the water and the boat goes forward.  I like that.  But, paddling a canoe is simple and complex at the same time.  That statement warrants explanation but, I don't care to get into the hows and whys of canoe handling.  I might do a blog entry on it someday.  It is interesting.
The Champlain removes me from the current time and place and transports my mind to the distant past where canoe travel was common place.  It allows me to escape the insanity of the interstate where people drive carelessly and too fast, mindlessly thrusting their bodies down the highway precariously close to other vehicles;  all the while holding a conversation on the cell phone.  I am far removed from all that here today.
Indian Boundary Lake is as beautiful as ever.  This is my first visit this year.  The hoards of tourists and campers keep me away in the summer.  They cause great disturbances on the shorelines of this little hundred acre lake.
The sun is high, the sky is blue, the mountains are majestic and unchanging.  It's good to be back here in the canoe and just, well, do nothing but paddle around.
I'm going to nose the canoe into my favorite spot to keep watch for ducks and otters.  I doubt I'll see wildlife as it's so late in the day.  The drive here is a killer and eats up time.  I used to be here at daybreak but, it's hard to do anymore due the distance I have to travel to get here.  I'll pull into an area full of water grasses and let the canoe rest on the grass.
This is going to be a great place to hang out.  I need to sharpen my pen knife and may as well do that while I'm sitting here.  Well;  why not?  I have nothing better to do.
Feels good to lean back against the seat back and just look around through half closed eyes.  It's only about 50 degrees out but the sun feels warm on my face.  The view down the lake is beautiful too.
There are a couple of Grebes floating around in the grass in front of me but, they are too far out to get a good picture.
I do miss my dogs, however.  Shade, the Black Lab, is not canoe trained and would be a 75 pound danger in the Champlain.  Happy, who is a Terrier, is the perfect size but, can not stand the cold due to the type of hair she has.  She would shiver the entire day.  Chestnut, the little Coon Hound, would work but, she is untried.  She is a hound and I fear would give chase to creatures large and small and ignore my calls to her.  She listens very well but hounds become intensely focused when on the chase.
Falcor, the little 7 month old light colored Golden Retriever I recently adopted has two more weeks of school to attend and he will be "the one."  I am holding high expectations for him.  He has a lot to learn about being out here.  He will constantly be with me and will be active every day and he will be able to live a life that other dogs will never have the chance to do.  But, I miss all my dogs as they are my treasures.

The Scona Lodge investigation has unveiled a lot of interesting data.  I'll post a blog entry in the near future about this make believe place.  It truly was the treasure at the other end of the rabbit hole, if you get my drift.
I am fascinated with that story.  But, it's good to put it on the table for awhile.  My head was starting to hurt from efforts expended to figure that story out.  I'm getting there.  It's an amazing story that has not been put into writing previous to my efforts, that I know of.  If the story has been told;  it is a secret book hidden in a secret place where it can't be found to read.  Scona Lodge is the best kept secret I know of.
It's getting late and with the advent of the time change;  darkness comes fairly early.
I better point the bow toward the truck.  This has been a very relaxing few hours.  The only bad part of the day is looking forward to struggling against the traffic on the interstate where everyone seems to be late getting to someplace.  I used to just leave the lake and meander back home to Greenback and rarely see a car.  I now struggle across towns and four lane highways to reach interstate 40 where the struggle for survival is a constant.   It sort of erases the "easy" frame of mind I have acquired throughout the day on the water.  Oh well;  it can't be changed.
  The sun is going down and its getting cold, the kind of cold that chills to the bone.  I didn't bring my heavy coat today.  I guess Summer is truly gone.  I hate to let go.
Thanks for visiting my site.  Hope you  liked the scenery.