Another Week on Pickwick
We had rain Wednesday afternoon, June 22nd, until about 4:00 p.m. Then Don came out on his pontoon and brought his adorable little Pomeranian, Precious. Bud showed up about 5:30 to visit for a couple of hours but they both headed home before dark.
With her funky summer haircut, Precious looks a lot like Buddy, our Pom who died in January of 2007.
Todd and Precious bonding on the gravel bar.
Thursday was hot and sunny and several boats were out. It was like family day at the Waterfall and there were lots of young kids. We spent a quiet day on the boat, reading, and then visited with Bud for a couple of hours when he came out around 5:30.
Friday was also a fairly mellow day. We used Bud’s outdoor patio and ice barge to make a quick trip to Grand Harbor for ice. We have certainly enjoyed having Bud’s pontoon rafted to “Life’s2Short” this past week! Thanks again, Iceman!
There were several boats in and out all day but they were all gone by early evening. Bud came out mid-afternoon and spent some time visiting with a nearby boat before moving over to the outdoor patio.
The Iceman making new friends.
Saturday was another busy day at the ‘fall. Bud arrived early afternoon carrying two bags of ice, chilled shrimp and other goodies on his Sea Doo and we proceeded to spend the afternoon visiting and observing.
Sunday morning Todd took the dinghy to collect firewood so we could have a fire that evening. By noon we had a fairly good crowd of people and boats, both on the gravel bar an in the cove behind us. About 1:30 a strong northeast wind hit and caused all kinds of chaos with boats blowing off the gravel bar and all over the cove. We were very well protected in our corner but we were about the only ones! It was crazy for about 30 minutes and then it settled down again. Fortunately no one got hurt. And the storms that followed ended up not amounting to much, even though they looked bad on radar.
After the storms passed, Bud caught a ride out with friends Chuck & Patty so he could take his pontoon home that evening since we were planning to leave the next day. That evening we enjoyed a very nice fire on the gravel bar. It was even pleasantly cool after the storm front passed.
Monday was another mellow day with several boats in and out. We had planned to move a couple of hours upriver to anchor at Ross Branch that evening but needed to have cell phone access due to a family situation and there is no cell coverage at Ross Branch. So, we hung at the Waterfall another day and Todd played washers on the gravel bar with some of the locals.
Bud came out on the pontoon about 5:30 and took us for a nice evening ride before heading back to Our Sunset Point of View. I don’t know if we’ve mentioned this before, but Bud’s beautiful home is now for sale. If you know of anyone who is in the market for high-end lakefront property, you would be hard-pressed to find anything more spectacular. Check out http://www.pickwicksunsetpoint.com/ for pictures and additional information.
We knew it was supposed to rain Tuesday afternoon and had planned to leave the Waterfall before it moved in; however, it was raining by 7:30 a.m. We still weren’t sure what was going on with our family situation, so we made a break for Aqua Yacht Harbor about 8:15 so we could get pumped out and in a slip before the really big stuff hit. And we made it! Not long after we got situated, it started pouring and continued to pour for about four hours. That evening we met Bud at Nuevo Vallarta for some great margaritas and Mexican food and said our goodbyes – for now.
On the way back to the marina, we picked up a copy of VIP Magazine, a local publication featuring Pickwick Lake and the surrounding area. One of the articles in this issue is entitled “You Might Be a Pickwickian…” (a spin-off of Jeff Foxworthy’s famous “You Might Be a Redneck…”). And one of the lines says: “If you know who ‘Ice Man’ is, you might be a Pickwickian.” Todd and I have decided that we must be Pickwickians since we are familiar with almost everything listed in the article!
Late Tuesday afternoon we learned that the family situation was stable (for now), so we spent Wednesday morning getting caught up on laundry and doing some shopping before pulling out of Aqua Yacht shortly after 2:00 p.m. We were only going about sixteen miles upriver to Ross Branch for the evening so we weren’t in a big hurry to leave.
Saying goodbye to our friend Jason at the Aqua Yacht fuel dock. See you this fall, Jason!
Thursday we covered about forty miles and went through two locks, Wilson and Wheeler, to anchor about a mile upriver from Wheeler Lock with our stern tied to a tree on shore for afternoon shade. After not traveling much for a few weeks, it seemed like a very long seven-hour day!
Lots of herons along the lakes.
Approaching Wilson Lock. With its 93-foot lift, it is the highest lock on the Tennessee River and the sixth highest single lift lock in the United States.
Todd went fishing Friday morning for a few hours but returned late morning as the mercury continued to climb. That afternoon we took a dinghy ride about a mile upriver to Joe Wheeler State Park to get some ice and had a late lunch in the resort’s dining room. We’ve never spent any time at Joe Wheeler but found it to be a very nice place, complete with a busy swimming pool on this holiday weekend.
Friday evening we decided to take the dinghy into Second Creek, just above the lock, to do a little exploring. We found several nice coves that remind us of some of the coves we saw in the Five Fingers area of Bay Springs Lake.
Today is Saturday, July 2nd, and we are still hanging in our spot about a mile above Wheeler Lock. This end of the lake has been very quiet so far, which is nice, but it’s also very hot with almost no breeze. And the water is much warmer than it was at the Waterfall so it doesn’t help much in terms of cooling one off. But it’s still nice to take a dip once in a while.
We don’t really have a plan right now and may stay here through the July 4th weekend. We’re still kicking around the idea of making a trip back to Missouri and if we do that, we will leave the boat at Ditto Landing near Huntsville, about sixty miles upriver. But we’re in a holding pattern for now and will just take each day as it comes. In the meantime, we hope everyone has a safe and happy 4th of July weekend!