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23 APRIL 2008

The class visited the SBG Annex several weeks ago. Neighbor Tammy Weekes kindly led us through her property from the street to the pond and outlined what she knew of the pond's history. In subsequent work we got plats of the Annex parcel and the Weekes property, found the iron pin marking the boundary between the two, and on 16 April 2008 we cut a narrow path through the dense Privet from Annex frontage on the street to the water.

Need canoes or kyaks to do any investigations. How to do it?

We repeated what turned out to be a rehearsal held a few weeks ago. Rent five 16-ft flatwater canoes from the Outdoor Equipment office at the Ramsey Center. But they are open only from 2:00 to 6:00 and do not rent any trailer or vehicle that could be used to transport them.
Rent for the afternoon a 24-ft truck from U-Haul. It's interior is 20 feet long and wide enough to handle that many canoes. Very easy to do over the web and friendly staff at the many locations in Athens. Pick up the truck at 1:30.

Drive truck to the racetrack in what is now the East Campus Village. Meet on the fly four POVs with students and instructor. Spend 30 min trying to find where to pick up the canoes. No signage! Success at last. Help staff member load canoes and bring out jackets and paddles and paperwork. Off we go to the annex at about 2:45.

Pick up the students assembled at Church of the Nations and follow the truck to the Annex.
Sorry, no pics of the most difficult part, getting the canoes to the water. More cutting had to be done, and more is still needed. These canoes are heavy, heavy and awkward to carry.

Here Drew helps pull their canoe onto the water.
After many attempts to get their canoe onto the water, Nisrin and Blair end up facing each other. This happened in most of the boats.
All set, if they can just get out of the weeds. Fascinating shoulder bag on Blair; no doubt waterproof and so attractive as well!
About an hour on the water. The water was too shallow for any approach by these canoes to the edges of the pond. The bottom was firm, apparently from being baked dry last summer, so it is possible to easily walk in the pond.

Should try the kyaks next time. How many does Outdoor Equipment have? How many trucks to cart 10-15 of them?
The Emily/Taylor/Hugh boat returns.
Emily has just 'helped' Josh and Daniel with their boat. The result was not as expected.
Patrick and Lauren, followed by Nisrin and Blair, starting back to the truck. This is open terrain compared to the rest of the trail.
Daniel at the bow and Josh out of view at the stern. Some hold-up up the line, but by now they have learned a few tricks and hauling them back was easier than bringing them down.

And back to civilization.

Thanks to Hugh and Taylor for driving the truck. And thanks to Blair, Nisrin, Josh, Emily and perhaps others who helped load and unload at Ramsey.

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