June 12-14, 2015
Nick’s Lake Camping Trip

Nick’s Lake weekend began on Thursday when 14 arrived and set up camp. We had a hearty arm muscle workout killing mosquitos with our tennis racket bug zappers (especially Aneta). We chatted and snacked on liverwurst, guacamole, and Sun Chips. Everything tastes better at a campsite, but for some liverwurst was still not a favorite. For supper half ate in the campgrounds and the other half went to Billy’s to chow down Italian fare and make reservations for the Friday dine-out night. Campfires were lit, the sky darkened and a few spotted some shooting stars. We dozed off to the sounds of the loons’ peaceful yodels and tremolos.

On Friday 13 more campers rolled in. A couple came from up north camping where it rained steadily, so they camped at a motel to dry out. The day began with breakfast at Keyes Pancake House, a nice jog, peaceful yoga, a relaxing walk, an uphill hike on Rocky Mountain for simply glorious views of the lakes or a paddle on Nick’s. In the afternoon another group, including some of the hikers, also paddled Nick’s Lake. It was a relaxing paddle (note the pics of legs hanging out the sides of the kayaks). Twelve dined at Billy’s. A couple went to Slickers to watch soccer. A few Boy Scout type kayakers, who stayed at the campground, promised to have a roaring fire ready, but they were foiled by the rain. It was a valiant try. The rain continued on and off through the night, but was not as heavy as back home where tornado alerts ran across the bottom of their TV screens. The loons were much nicer to listen to than the evening news about bad weather and escaped prisoners.

Saturday began with breakfast at Jim and Di’s pancake palace. They are breakfast specialists. What a feast! Thank you. No one makes a pancake better than Jim and Di.

One Saturday paddle was on the ever beautiful Moose River. Rick, Cindy, Walt, Dave L, Mark, Fish, and Christina were shuttled for their fast trip from Rondaxe Rd to Green Bridge. It was about 12-13 miles, including portage. The water level was high and the current was swifter than a few weeks ago.

The 20-milers chose the Fulton Chain of Lakes. Robert, Aneta, Hugh, and Ray said they had smooth and energizing 20+ paddling miles.

Limekiln Lake was thoughtfully chosen by Kathy, Kim, Tish, Eric, Jim, Steve, and Christine – yes, someone chose Limekiln even after the enticements to go on the Moose. Humm, maybe a few more feathers with that dance might work next time to convince her to choose differently. We encountered plenty of frogs, a lot of loons, a waterfall flowing vigorously from the bottom of a tree, a loon nesting and a dive bombing seagull. Poor Jim found himself near shore between a parent seagull and its baby. Boy was that parent mad!! I was able to take a picture when the little one waddled back near the parent on the log. What a cute ball of fluff. Back on land we chose to visit the Screaming Eagle on the way home to camp. They have good pizza and beverages plus the pooches, Edgar and Lucy, were allowed on the back porch.

With all Saturday paddles safely completed, campers (and motel folks) cleaned up, prepared food and gathered for supper at Tish’s site. There was way too much food as usual, so no one went hungry. We have the best cooks, too. (If it’s smoking, it’s cooking!) Thanks for hosting, Tish. We had a nice campfire afterwards and were entertained with glow sticks and camp stories before turning in.

On Sunday all but 9 packed up. There were 2 paddles. A couple of 20-milers, Hugh and Ray, headed for Raquette Lake. They said the waterfall was flowing pretty fast. The remainder, plus non-camper Bill E, paddled around Alger Island from Old Forge pond. They spotted two more nesting loons (one on the island and one on 2nd Lake), lots of cute ducklings, turtles, a few boats, those darn noisy jet skis, and enjoyed the perfect summer day. They were met on the island by a ranger collecting money for use of the isle to picnic. Luckily, there was no fee for campers. We were thankful for the nice clean outhouse (which is better than no bathroom at all). Paddlers were Tish, Eric, Christine, Kathy, Kim, and Bill E. It was a calm 12.76 miles paddle. Back at the pond we loaded up and found ice cream.

Campers reunited and went to the Old Mill for supper or ate on their site. The evening ended with éclairs at an umbrella campfire, because it began sprinkling on and off. Someone dozed off and the proof is in the pic. It rained lightly all night. We were very happy the rain fell just at night on this weekend.

We packed up Monday morning amid sprinkles off the trees. A few took a short hike checking out the animal footprints in the wet sand and then visited stores like the infamous Old Forge Hardware or Kayuta Drive In before heading towards home.

Attendees in order of daily appearance:

Several deer, lots of frogs, many loons, cute baby ducks, and a few turtles. One frog sat by the ladies room door every evening (prince charming?). Jim, Mickey, Di, Nancy, Robert, Aneta, Christine, Hugh, Eric, Steve, Dave, Walt, Tish and Kim. Canine companions Edgar, Lucy, Bauer and kiss-y bird Cooper. Kathy, Ray, Heather, Wesley, Jason, Rick, Chuck, Cindy, Fish, Roger, Mark, Dan and Sue. Christina. Bill E.

Report & Images by Kim Wojnowicz & Images by Eric Zhaman, Walter Stroud & Steve Stoddard

CNY Kayakers Syracuse NY

Camillus Kayak Shop Web Design Syracuse