Over the River and Through the Wood

One of the joys of hiking are the surprises found just around the bend. What lies ahead? What sights will be discovered…

Inyo National Forest_Trail to Barney Lake_1

Ugh. Sorry. I can’t do it. You don’t need me to explain the excitement of the unknown. You have shopping to do. I have turkey to digest.

Besides, it’s November. Who is (or wants to think about) hiking right now, despite how wise a little exercise might be, given that the season of gluttony is upon us? Not me!

Thoughts of holidays prompted memories of times spent at my grandparent’s house. Let’s go there, shall we?

Yes, I’ve blogged about mowing their lawn and the parties they held, but today please let me tell you about this river:

View of Mokelumne River_2

The river is dammed for part of the year, forming a lake downriver. During winter months, the water is released until the next spring thaw brings a new flow of recently melted snow.

Point being, that water is cold (“refreshing”). Also, the current is surprisingly strong (despite the deceptively placid surface). Upriver is to the right, so what you see here is water flowing away from the camera and around the corner to the left. Take a better look:

View of Mokelumne River_3

Eh, that didn’t help. Sorry.

Anyway, the river is mainly used by water-skiers. My grandparents kept a boat dock, barely in use by the time I came along. Oh! Here it is:

Mokelumne River_Boat Dock

There are stairs (were stairs? the property sold a few years ago, and they tore the house down to build a McMansion, so everything might have changed…) right where the fence breaks for the cement. Swimmers used that area to enter and exit the water. A boat fit into the space on the other side of the brown boards extending into the river.

I tell you all of this because I was thinking about summers spent swimming in the river, mostly with Cousin Billy. (Or should I call him “Huck Finn?” He constantly got me into trouble…)

What with the cold water, strong current, and all the speed boats and water-skiers speeding around blind corners (and their resultant waves), we were required to wear life-jackets, stay close to the side of the river, and not venture out of sight, especially downriver.

All of which leads me back to where this started — exploring just around the bend.

To Be Continued

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s