Tuesday, June 27, 2006

orogenesis zone

The rain was back with a venegence. And I mean that in the least metaphorical way possible (notwithstanding the clever title of this entry). Simply put: it rained a lot on Saturday. I rained a lot on Sunday. It rained a lot on Monday. The ground was soping wet. The rivers ran milk chocolate brown. And Sunday, during the breaks in the storm at 6000', the views were magnificent. At least I thought so.

Never let anyone tell you that the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Art Loeb trail are the wrong places to be during a thunderstorm.

You can click virtually every one of these photographs for a larger photograph.

This is at the top of the Caney Fork watershed. If I peed here I could possibly be fishing in my own urine at Moses Creek some time later.

I will move back here in the near future.

Friday, June 23, 2006

the bonas defeat photographic extravaganza

The East branch of the Tuckaseegee river cuts a deep and rugged gorge from where it exits Panthertown Valley at Devils Elbow until it hits the Tanasee impoundment. Tanassee is a small lake and below it the river resumes its erosional spectacularity, if you will, until it runs into Bear Creek Lake.

Bonas Defeat is a 400' cliff less than a mile below the Tanasee spillway where, according to local legend, a hunting dog Bonas fell to his death driving deer (or bear, depending on which version you hear) off the cliff for his owner. This strech of land is managed by Nantahala National Forest for the Nature Conservancy who own (?) it. You can read more about Bonas Defeat here.

Anyway, here are some pictures from our hike down the valley yesterday. It was myself, Josh Haddock (fellow philosopher in training), Prof.Greg Adkison and his neighbor Patrick (whose last name I didn't catch).

It was pretty fucking cool. And today I'm pretty sore.

If they release water from Tanasee I imagine you might be pretty screwed.

There are a lot of potholes on this stretch of river. You can make out an arch between two of them here.

This is a big mat of moss, ferns, liverworts etc. that fell off the rock wall above. Kind of neat we thought.

I didn't get any good pictures of the actual cliff, but here is a shot of a waterfall with the cliff in the back ground. Patrick and I swam there. It was cold.




This is Josh descending from a pothole. I really like this picture.

The potholes are supposedly made by rocks rubbing holes in bigger rocks. Here is a really cool example of this process in the early stages. The smaller rock fit perfectly in that hole. CLICK FOR BIGGER.

A pothole in a pothole. CLICK FOR BIGGER.

Patrick in a pothole. CLICK THIS PICTURE.

Patrick in a "grotto". Not the best photograph, but cool.


This is the section called "Grandma's Kitchen", a view from the top. I came really really close to falling in a big pothole here. That would have been bad. I probably would have broken something. Drowned? Well, anyway, I didn't fall in. CLICK FOR BIGGER.

Grandma's Kitchen from the bottom. CLICK FOR BIGGER.

Another of Grandma's Kitchen:

You can see Greg and Josh in the upper left looking for a way around. We had to go up in the woods here. Just too shady.


This is a little buddy we saw. I think it is Notophthalmus viridescens (Red Eft) and not Pseudotriton ruber (Northern Red) as I claimed yesterday. CLICK FOR BIGGER.

If you go, be really careful and don't go alone. Next time I go I'll probably wear my felt soled wading boots. It is very slippery and there are a lot of shady places to slip onto, around of, backwards by, down in, down through, down on, and into.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

a not not unexpected double posting!

Holy banana bread batman! I'm going to Bonas Defeat tomorrow!

YOU: "Get out of town!" you exclaim, wide-eyed in disbelief. "The same Bonas Defeat where Bonas was defeated? That's just crazy talk man, you can't go there!"

ME: "Oh no? I'm afraid you have been imprecise in your declamation. Perhaps your utterrance should have been: 'You can go, but it is dangerous there and you might not come back all in one piece'."

YOU: "Indeed. Indeed you are right, as per the norm. Sal Fasano went to Bonas Defeat once. It was too much for him. It scared his facial hair into a permanent fu manchu. I hope that doesn't happen to you."

ME: "I kind of do hope that happens to me to be completely honest. I've wanted to try out the fu manchu look for a while now. And anything Sal Fasano does is ok by me so I'm rather looking forward to this trip."

But anyway, I went fishing yesterday on Moses Creek again. No bear this time. But I did catch a little wild rainbow trout. Rainbow trout are my least favorite trout.

People say, "Hey dude, why are all the trout you catch so small?" Mainly because I like to fish in relatively wild places and relatively wild places are hard to find these days. Mostly they are up in the mountains where it's hard to get to and that usually means the creeks are small and therefore the fishes are small. But I don't mind.

This is Moses Creek. Clicketh theth firsteth pictureth foreth aeth largereth versioneth.

Click on the rainbow trout to see it in all it's hideous splendor (by far the least attractive trout in my humble opinion despite the name).

Driving home, almost to Caney Fork:

Bonas Defeat pictures some time soon.