A bucket list of adventures starring Sleepy, Hiking Geer, Gusto, Helpdesk, Rolling Peach and Pepe'

Friday, October 20, 2023

Jocassee October 9-10 2023

Gusto, Helpdesk and Pepe went on a much overdue trip to Jocassee.  We did an overnight stay at one of our favorite spots along the foothills trail.  The weather was great however the evening star gazing was hit or miss.  Some light cloud cover interrupted our view from time to time.   It was Helpdesks first long trip with the new Eddyline Fathom and Pepe's first long trip in the Storm GT.  Both performed well and carried all our gear with no issues.  

Looking forward to our next trip so we can check out the falls.

Monday, July 17, 2023

Fishing Creek Lake July 2023

 Helpdesk, Gusto, and Pepe headed out to a new location.  The initial plan was to try the new put in on Fishing Creek and paddle south to Great Falls Lake.  However, once we arrived at Nitrolee access area, the put in was covered in a few inches if not close to half a foot of mud.  Not wanting to make a total mess of our boats, shoes and equipment we decided to look for other options.  Here are a few photos of the Nitolee access.


We ended up traveling a few miles north on highway 21 to the Fishing Creek access.  From there we completed just over 5 miles in a loop.  It was plenty hot but we took a break about half way and practiced kayak rescues.  All three of us were successful getting back in with the help of a partner kayak. 

There was surprisingly a low number of boats on the lake for a Sunday afternoon in mid summer.  It worked out great for us on this trip, however. 


Wednesday, February 15, 2023

Super Bowl Trip 2023

 Well, this year you can't call it the Ski Bowl because we didn't actually ski.  The weather had been pretty warm headed into Super Bowl week and therefore the conditions on the slopes were questionable at best. So, instead of skiing we ended up doing a hike off the Blue Ridge Parkway near Moses Cone Mansion.  We have done this walk before and it's ~5 miles round trip up to an old fire tower.  Great views from up there and really nice and well maintained trails. 

On Saturday we headed over to Roan Mountain State Park.  We parked at Carvers Gap (elevation 5512) then walk a fairly short distance to Round Bald.  The views were awesome even with a few clouds overhead

After the trip to Roan Mountain we headed back toward Banner Elk.  On the way we stopped by Elk River Falls.  The short hike was much easier this time without the mud and ice.  

We finally got some snow late in the day on Sunday.  If the temp had dropped earlier in the day we probably would have got 8-12 inches.  But as it worked out we only received about 1 to 1.5 inches.  It was nice to see it cover the ground.  

Another year in the books.  Can't wait to do it again next year. 

Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Edisto River - December 2022

Gusto and Helpdesk made a long overdue trip back to the Edisto River.   This time we stayed at Colleton State Park in the only camper cabin in the park.   The park is relatively small but very nicely laid out.  The cabin was simple but clean and had plenty of room for two paddlers.  We discovered that the cabin used to function as a picnic shelter.  At some point it was closed in to make the current cabin.  There was no restroom or indoor plumbing.  We used the campground bathhouse for those needs.  However, there was a small refrigerator, microwave, coffee maker and an outside water spigot. 

Camper Cabin 

 Path to a small beach area where we launched from

Gusto and Helpdesk did have a bit of a communication breakdown on equipment.  Helpdesk had our touring boats in mind and missed the fact that Gusto didn't have his touring boat handy so he was planning to bring his smaller recreation 10 foot boat.  It was a bit of a surprise to both of us that we missed this important detail.  We both questioned each others responses to things like the best way to transport the boats etc.  It's a different approach depending on the boat and even with the unusual answers to each other it was still missed.  Most likely it was Helpdesk that missed the detail here.  

As you can see there is a significant different in the length of the boats and how efficient they are on the water.

We arrived before noon on Friday December 2nd.  Luckily we were able to check in early and get our gear stored away.  We had plenty of time for a short paddle and decided to just paddle upstream vs driving up and having to shuttle back to get a vehicle.  We paddled a few miles up stream and got a good appreciation of the downstream current.  It was a nice afternoon workout for sure. 

Later in the evening we worked out a deal to leave a vehicle overnight at Givhans Ferry State Park , our destination on Saturday.

We got started early on Saturday Morning and with the help of the current were able to easily set a pace of ~ 4.4 miles per hour on average.   The weather was excellent, cool but not cold, and the sun broke through the high clouds around mid morning. The sun warmed things up nicely and we both had to shed a layer midway through the paddle.  

Gusto found this hornets nest close to the river at Colleton State Park

The trip as captured on multiple GPS devices but not all of them were started at the same time.  The paper maps indicated a 22 mile trip.  However, the system that Helpdesk started as close to the beginning as possible measured 23.1 miles. All devices agreed on the moving average of 4.4 MPH. Above is the track from a Samsung phone.  That information was also uploaded to AllTrails below.  This is an interactive map that you can zoom in on and change the map data to satellite, topo, etc. 

Saturday, September 24, 2022

The Green - September 2022

 Well,  what a year.  It's going by fast and we have not done as much as we wanted.  However, what a great day to be on the Green.  The weather was perfect, sunny and in the low 70's.  The water was a little chilly but luckily no one turned over.   Helpdesk and Gusto were the only two to make the trip and it was a good one. 

Friday, March 18, 2022

2022 Ski Bowl Weekend


Gusto, Helpdesk and Pepe` took to the slopes on Friday before the big game.  Perfect weather in the morning and as the day went on it got a little warm.  Overall it was one of the better days to be on the slopes.

This year we took a new hike on the Flat Top Mountain trail, part of Moses H Cone Memorial Park.  The hike was easy and the views were great.  At the top of the mountain there is a lookout tower with even better views.

Another great weekend in the books!  

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Morris Island Lighthouse - October 4, 2021

 Helpdesk and Gusto made some last minutes changes to a planned Jocassee trip due to impending weather.  That change was to head south to the coast and paddle to Morris Island Lighthouse (a trip we have come to really enjoy).  The original plan was to paddle to the lighthouse on Sunday October 3rd but rain in the forecast had us rethink that trip and instead just do some walking around camp.  We stayed overnight at James Island County Park.  Very nice place with everything from primitive camping to cabins on the marsh. Anyway, back to the story at hand.  We woke up early and broke camp (I'm sure the RV's around us were glad to see the rig we had move out of the neighborhood) and headed to the Folly River put in and started our paddle toward the lighthouse.  The wind was at our backs and the sun felt intense for the first third of the paddle.  Once we turned into the inlet and marsh system we started catching some wind from the side and the sun was partially blocked by some high thin clouds.  That made things much more enjoyable for the rest of the trip.  We arrived as the tide was beginning to go out and we were able to paddle fairly deep into what would soon be a big sandbar. 

Once we landed we pulled the kayaks well on shore and took the quick walk to get a better view of the lighthouse.  

Gusto has always wanted to paddle around the lighthouse and ended up dragging his boat to the other side of the sandbar and launching in the relatively small surf for a short trip in open waters.  Helpdesk decided it was best to not push his beach re-entry skills as he was having flashbacks of returning to the shore in La Jolla that didn't end well at all. La Jolla Trip

After having the flashback of flipping coming ashore on the west coast, Helpdesk decided it was best to keep his feet firmly planted on the sand instead of being face planted on the sand. 

But look at Gusto take off.  

Here is the GPS track and some stats on the trip.

Distance above is one way.  So we burned some calories which would come in handle later as desert was on the menu at Ellis Creek Fish Camp 

Great trip and one that I'm sure we will do again.