July Camping Trip – Rollins Pond


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Wednesday

Eric, Kim, Di, Sondra, Jim, Mickey, and Bob arrived and set up. It was a bit of a drive for some and a relatively short one from Lake Eaton for 3 seasoned campers. Bob checked out the circumference of Rollins Pond for a nice 8 mile paddle. We sampled the tasty treats from the charming ice cream truck. Yummy! We enjoyed a relaxing fire at Di’s until the rain poured down at 11 PM.

Thursday

Hugh, Kathy, Gene and Tish arrived to join the group. We paddled Rollins Pond, then a stream with mini rapids to Floodwood Pond and stopped at the small Mountain Man shop. It was very busy there with all ages of paddlers, including a spry 91 year old kayaker. We are all hoping to follow in his footsteps and be out on the water at his age. We travelled back through the rapids either paddling, pushing, or walking. Jim found a 3-foot hole while walking. Ooopps. Kim and Eric were fortunate to see a swimming deer on Rollins Pond. There was also a minor scuffle when a loon popped up in the midst of several ducks. They squawked at each other for a minute then the loon raised its wings and the ducks scooted quickly away. There was a fluffy baby loon swimming with its parents who gave a hoot when I came near for a picture and a couple of turtles were keeping each other warm.

The evening came to a close with the visit to the ice cream truck, a fire at Kathy & Kim’s (by the mosquito maternity ward stream) then rain by 11 PM.

Friday

Four and ¾ more campers arrived: Ray, Wesley, Jason and Heather with bun in oven.

We paddled the small loop starting at Rollins Pond and going clockwise. We saw a hawk, geese, loons and not much else in the form of wildlife. The wilderness view is beautiful in all directions and so peaceful. Some turned around at the portage from Copperas to Whey Pond to get extra miles. Some endured the up and downhill root-filled portage to Whey then an easy portage from Whey back into Rollins Pond. Mileages were 7-8 miles and 15-20 miles for the ones backtracking. Six preserved the tradition of dining out on Friday. They had a delicious meal on the back patio at Little Italy in Tupper Lake. Then came ice cream, fire at Di’s and the nightly rain by 11 PM.

Saturday

The dinner crew checked out a launch on the way home from Tupper Lake on Friday and the club decided to change Saturday’s paddling plans. We paddled the Raquette River from Chrusher launch. First, we went southwest towards Tupper Lake. We saw several houses and camps after about 45 minutes, so we backtracked and traveled northeast past the launch then east/south/east. It was more remote, but the wildlife were napping, I think. Kayakers spotted a frog, turtle, snapper, ducks, hawk, and an almost invisible heron. A damselfly hopped on one boat for a lift, while another sat on a hand. The exposed roots of the trees were quite interesting. Mileages for the groups were 9.9, 14.5, and 20 miles.

Hungry campers gathered at Kathy and Kim’s for the Saturday shared dinner which included steak, hot dogs, salmon couscous with oranges, salads (delicious tuna and Hugh’s creation with Jodi’s ingredients), veggies, salt potatoes, deviled eggs, fruits, baklava and yummy moist chocolate molasses cinnamon cake. The day concluded with ice cream, fire at Kathy and Kim’s, and rain by 11 PM (notice the pattern here?)

Sunday

Most packed up their gear and headed home. Ray paddled the Saranac before heading out. Finally some genuine wildlife: a bear ran in front of Kathy’s car on the way home. So jealous!

The 3 who remained relaxed, read, sewed, walked, watched coming and goings, wondered about an unusual duck-taped tarp, and pondered over the abundant kayaking here at Rolllins, noting that it was well worth the drive. We had a shared dinner on Tish and Gene’s site with all the leftovers on Gene’s birthday tablecloth. Happy Birthday!! Yep, then ice cream, fire at Kim’s and uncharacteristically NO RAIN.

Report & Images by Kim Wojnowicz Images by Eric Zhaman,

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