Sit. Rep. #58: On the Rocks

1-  Please find this Youtube video:   Bill Mason’s Path of the Paddle – White Water

This video runs about an hour – it 2 combined 30 min shows.  I have taken lots of notes from this video.  He uses a few different terms:  Listen for these:  Hay Stack waves,  Roller Coaster,  Ledge,  Chute,  Ferry,  and Brace.  The words and terms may be different than what you may use – but the water & river are the same.  So learn & follow his techniques.

1B- Reminders from the video:  No 2 rivers are alike, and  No 2 rapids are alike.  The water (same river)  can be extremely different depending on the water flow/volume, read the water/river, get low in the boat (lower your center of gravity) in rapids & whitewater.

      Spread your knees & brace them against the gunwales (bring waterproof knee pads if you like).  Learn how to recover a swamped canoe.  Watch and be able to use the many different paddle strokes.

     A swamped canoe can easily hold about 250 gals. of water (think 8 plus pounds per gal.).  How would it feel if the river pinned you against a rock with the swamped canoe?

     Communicate with your canoe partner.  The size & depth of the rocks are read at the surface.  Keep your bow up & out of the water if at all possible.

     Don’t be afraid to get wet… esp. if getting wet means your safety.  Leave No Trace applies on the river.  When & where do you lean into the river?   Do you lean upstream or downstream?  Watch & learn how to “ferry” across moving water.

   What kind of hat is he wearing?  Why?   What does he say about spring runs?  Do you have enough rope to “rope” your canoe through a set of rapids?    Notice the PFD / Lifejacket.

   Most importantly: learn, enjoy, have fun, practice being a team, and BE SAFE!

This is a good video that was done by the CBC.

M- There goes a self-made man.
N- Yeah, too bad he quit too early.

2- More from Scott Kelly: American engineer, a retired astronaut, and U.S. Navy captain. A veteran of four space flights.
     “… I never missed the chance to have a video conference with family and friends. Scientists have found that isolation is damaging not only to our mental health but to our physical health as well, especially our immune systems. Technology makes it easier than ever to keep in touch, so it’s worth making time to connect with someone every day — it might actually help you fight off viruses.”

O- What would happen if you fed cows 20 dollar bills?
P- You would get rich milk.

3- As amateur radio operators, we often use batteries to power our radio equipment. Some types of batteries are rechargeable, while others are not.
Which of the following battery types is not rechargeable?   Carbon-zinc
     Which of the following battery types is rechargeable?    

           All of these choices are correct:
              • Nickel-metal hydride
              • Lithium-ion
              • Lead-acid gel-cell

O- What would happen if you fed the cows 20 dollar bills and pennys?
P You would get Half & Half.

Coral Snake – Red on Yellow beware the fellow! – NC Wildlife

5- There are 4 dangerous poisonous snakes in North Carolina:  Copperhead, Rattlesnake, Coral snake, Cottonmouth water moccasin.

    Personally: I have never seen a Coral Snake in the wild.  They are coastal in habitat.  Note: They are not Pit Vipers.  They also hunt at night.  Remember this, Red on Black friend of Jack.  Red on Yellow beware the fellow.  The look-a-like version is a King snake – a very useful snake.


Copperhead – WUNC

  Both rattlesnakes and copperheads can be found almost everywhere in North Carolina.  Mostly these snakes are very shy and are only wanting to hunt things they can eat.  But do not cross them or corner them.  Watch/be careful when transversing a log or rock.  Lore about rattlesnakes is wrong:  they do not always rattle before striking.


Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake-US National Park Service


The snake that I respect (fear) the most is the Cottonmouth / Water Moccasin.  They are aggressive and have a VERY dangerous bite!  The bite is compounded by having a dirty mouth in addition to the venom.  My observation is that the Cottonmouth likes warmer weather & water than our Piedmont territory.  Still watch they will drop off of trees into your boat.

Cottonmouth / Water Moccasin Snake – University of Florida

    NOTE: All water snake bites should be treated as a medical emergency because of their “dirty mouth.”  They may not be poison but the bite can cause blood poisoning from the bacteria.  Also note: The individual colors vary.  Be wary and be careful around all snakes.

 An ounce of work is worth more than a pound of excuses,

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