Pattison on Wheels

Thursday, April 17, 2008

4-17-08: Harmless Alligators—Dangerous Mosquitoes

I slept thirteen hours. I may have overdone the paddling yesterday. Ego. I felt OK though and took my time making fried eggs and toast and then disassembling the camp and putting it all into the waterproof bags and loading the canoe. I must have misread my watch when I shoved off because when I got back to the confluence of the North and South Forks it was earlier than when I thought I’d left. Probably about an hour coming downstream what took five hours up. More challenging down because of the speed you approach hazards.

From here the Edisto River became quite wide and after a while I felt OK to unpack the camera from the dry bag and keep it at hand.

The number of cabins increased. Some were missing roofs from an apparent tornado. There was a cabin with some one working on it. First people I’ve seen since yesterday morning. Lots of birds though, and turtles too, and one sizable alligator.

I drifted as slowly as the fast current would allow and kept exploring every possible side swamp and inlet. I kept weeping slightly. Maybe I’m happy.

I camped in an inlet around three. I unloaded the gear, inflated the air mattress, and rested my weary back. Well, I asked for some upper body exercise.

It was warm. I had rice and black eyed peas and retired to the tent to call a friend and then read safely out of reach of the mosquitoes which are plentiful in these little backwaters I like to nest in.


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