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Monday, January 28, 2008

Sturgeon River 2004 Part II

We floated out of the ‘valley of the bears’ and out into a wide plain, and the rest of the trip went pretty much as advertised. Admittedly we both had a healthy case of bearanoia for the rest of the trip, but we had no more problems. One morning we did wake up to a bear hanging about just outside the electric fence – his eyes glowed in Dicky’s headlamp beam. He swore it was a bear and I told him it was probably a fox. It did turn out to be a bear! But he was just hanging out and checking out our camp. He never gave us any problems.

We camped for a few days at two different campsites and went deer hunting. Lots of big bucks wandering about the landscape and with no particular effort we managed to harvest 3 of them. The horns on top of our meat cache seemed quite elemental, and somehow Nordic, so we named our camp Vahalla.

The boats carried all of the deer and gear quite handily (cue the Deliverance soundtrack) and we floated all the way to the lagoon where Rolan picked us up in his seaplane. While on the trip Dicky was excited to learn via SAT phone that Ella was pregnant. I learned from Zoya that the Red Sox had come back from an 0-3 deficit to beat the Yankees in the American League Championship Series. Oh the joys of a SAT phone.

Photo: Top photo is of our ‘mega light’ cook tent. We’d pitch it over a hole in the tundra and have lots of room for our legs. The second photo is of a pond next to our camp out in the broad valley after leaving the ‘valley of the bears’. If you look closely at the third photo you can see our last camp in the ‘canyon’ on the lower part of the river. The 4rth photo is of me hunting deer with Sturgeon Lagoon in the background. The 5th photo is of our meat cache – Vahalla! Finally the bottom photo is of us in our loaded canoes negotiating the last part of the river to the lagoon. My boat has two whole deer (quartered) and gear in it. Patrick

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