Fall 2011 Campout Report
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By Grey Eagle

We decided months ago to have our October meeting at a camping trip. The original destination was the same place we had our last campout (Candlers Point on Lake Hatchineha). The weekend before the campout, we had between 4 and 14 inches of rain in Florida, depending on the specific area. Lake Hatchineha is in the Kissimmee River basin which quickly flooded. Our campsite would have been underwater.

Grey Eagle was able to get permission to use his parents' campsite in Lake County (about 40 miles from Lake Hatchineha). Pretty Lake, where the campsite is, was low before the rains, and only got about 4 inches while the rest of the area was being deluged. The rain almost restored Pretty Lake to normal levels.

The Advance Guard

Bear Hawk, Hawk Dancing, Running Fox, and Grey Eagle went out on Friday night in order to be there first thing Saturday. (Chief Wild Red Star was planning to arrive before 8 Am.). While there is a cabin by the lake, we had thought it was being used for storage and therefore unavailable. Turns out, Grey Eagle's dad said there was plenty of room for 4 people in the cabin, so we just slept on the floor of the cabin Friday night rather than set up tents in the dark.

Saturday morning, Hawk Dancing and Grey Eagle went out to the road by 7:45 to open the chain for the Chief and her family. The plan was for Chief to call when they turned off the main highway (about 5 miles away). At about 8:15, The Eagle and the Hawk went back to the campsite, whereupon, the Hawk went fishing.

A little before 9:30 Chief called and Hawk Dancing ran out to meet them. The Advance Guard had pretty much eaten by then, and we all began putting up tents.

We had planned to boat to our original campsite on Lake Hatchineha, and we had planned to do canoe races and a lot of fishing. So we had a small fleet at our disposal at Pretty Lake.

We wasted little time getting the fishing started.

Wolf Spirit keeping her mom the Chief from falling in.

Pretty Lake is an interconnected chain of 5 smaller lakes. After fishing the main lake, we moved further North. There was one spot where the water was very shallow. Wolf Spirit didn't hesitate to jump out like any warrior and pull the boat.

Notice the lady-like grace with which she pulls the boat. (Click on the picture for a video)

Wolf Spirit taking a dry-off break.

Back ashore, we did some axe practice.

What is unusual about this picture is that Running Fox is blind. Click on the picture for a video

Of course, what campsite would be complete without a fire?

Before lighting the fire, Strong Bear showed the younger warriors what dry, dead Spanish Moss looked like, and sent them after some.

Cody has found some.

Now lets put some of that moss under the fire

and light it.

These warriors seem fascinated with Strong Bear's skill

Strong Bear seems fascinated with his skill, too

Hawk Dancing seems fascinated with something

Before long, we have a nice fire.

Take a closer look at that fire! This is not a trick photo. Can you see the buck?

After the fire was started, we practiced some fire starting techniques (without using matches).

Of course one great use for fire is turning pork into dinner.

We didn't eat the boots

And of course there's just pondering around the campfire

On Sunday, Chief and Strong Bear were up around daybreak to fish. Chief used her considerable culinary skills to prepare the noon repast.

After lunch, we had the canoe races. Somehow we didn't get pictures though. But we did get pictures of moving the derelict boat that was nearby. It was where someone might run into it in the dark or in the fog. It was hard work, but we managed to get it moved into the weeds where no one can motor through anyway.

Strong Bear and Wolf Spirit won the canoe racing. Only two canoes tipped over, and we won't say who was on board, will we WRS, HD, Cy and BH? Back ashore, we dried off (some more casually than others).

Nice - uh - shorts, "Bare Hawk"!

Before going home, we had to take care of - er, sanitation

All too soon, we had to go home. Can't wait for next camping trip.