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[ft-l] 25 Hikers Wet Themselves (and it wasn't raining)

you guys are just WAY TOO QUIET.  is it because ticks &
chiggers & lightning are in the woods?  that is why i took
a group of  f.t.a.'ers out on the cool clear clean santa fe
river last weekend.  here's a little something i wrote for
our chapter newsletter.  just for lack of anything else on
the list, i'll share it with you, too:
25 Hikers Wet Themselves
(and it wasn't raining)

It was only  9AM and already incredibly hot, steamy, sticky,
when we hikers (and offspring) met for a day's outing on the
beautiful Santa Fe.  We unloaded our boats, the rentals
arrived, we 'settled up' and took off to shuttle cars to the
takeout.  The ride back from the takeout is worth mentioning,
since 15 (that's FIFTEEN) drivers came back in one ancient
VW bus.  Yes, we have photos.  Old doobie didn't go too fast,
though, for in addition to her heavy load, she had been accidentally
filled with diesel instead of gas.  She smoked and coughed and
smelled really bad but she toodled us on back to the put in.
We loaded people, coolers, masks and fins and set off
downstream being hosed down (cooled off) by somebody's
water blaster.

The Santa Fe is spring fed and so it remains cool and
refreshing all summer.  Although most of the big springs
along the way are private, their spring runs are cold and clear
and can be enjoyed from the river.  We swam at Lily - the
clothing optional spring - and all opted to remain clothed.
Lunch was at Rum Island Spring, about half way through
the 12-mile trip.

Melinda considered anything afloat as fair game for her
water cannon.  She blasted our wimpy super soakers from
our trembling wet hands as we attempted to return fire.  As
we paddled past the floating human island that is Gennie
Springs, I witnessed more than one cigarette-smoking,
beer-drinking, mall-haired woman calling Melinda ugly
names and threatening her life.  But everybody else
enjoyed the drenching and Melinda said that those women
couldn't catch her anyway.

And so it was, that we hikers laughed and played and enjoyed
a hot day.  More than once I thought of our orange-blazed trail
out there waiting in the fragrant, baking woods that are so full
of life with the summer things.   (You know the 'summer things'
I'm talking about.)  It will soon be time to wear shoes again and
tidy up that trail, but until then, we're just trying to make do in
the heat the best we know how.  It works for me.


* From the Florida Trail Mailing List | http://www.backcountry.net *

To:            ft-l@backcountry.net
Cc:            Eileen Wyand <erwyand@gte.net>, Sherri Braddy <brocks@earthlink.net>