The kids woke up in their hammocks to wish me a happy Father’s Day. The day started at a beautiful campsite and ended at another beautiful campsite. It doesn’t get much better than that.
RobinHood took off with Rocky and Ferris as soon as they headed out. Cartwheel waited for Iron Chef and Sparky and left with them. Momma Bear hurried after them a few minutes later to stay close to her cubs. I finished my Father’s Day coffee chatting with Sautée, then took off to catch the pack.
We caught up to Unity and Stick-in-the-Mud while they were having breakfast. Throughout the day we hiked with different combinations of this group, the kids eliciting stories and conversations we would never extract as adults.
We got to see some cool engineering as we passed the United States’ first built circular well for treating acid rain. Part of an acidic stream (pH around 4) is diverted through a well of crushed limestone and reintroduced downstream, raising the pH above 6, and leading to a huge increase in the streams ability to sustain aquatic life. Most in the group were impressed by this, apparently very effective, innovation. Others, less so, declaring the design extremely basic.
After the late night, RobinHood was tired. At one point he stopped to tie his shoe while Mama Bear and Cartwheel continued on. I was bringing up the rear after trying to sort out maildrops for some replacement gear. Coming up the hill was greeted by a very concerned Orion (who often runs between us when we get spread out along the trail). He was whining and ran up to show me a sleeping RobinHood who had dozed off on the side of the trail. Orion was very concerned that RobinHood was there unaccompanied, as was Mama Bear who arrived shortly, trying to figure out what had happened to the shoe-tier. A couple quick licks to his face and he emerged once more (a little less groggy).
The day also brought exciting news from someone enjoying his very first Father’s Day: Congratulations to Neva and Fredo on their new daughter Laelia! And happy Father’s Day to all you other fathers out there as well.
Nathan looks like a reclining leprechaun. Very cute! Happy Father’s Day! We went sailing with another family on the bay. No capsizing, thank goodness, considering the boat was much larger this time.
Sometimes the best engineering designs are the simplest (fewer moving parts increases reliability) and closest mimics of Mother Nature’s design (millions of years of demonstrated performance). Percolating rain through limestone increases both alkalinity (which makes the water less susceptible to swings in pH) and pH and is how Mother Nature creates beautiful trout streams. Mother Nature’s design is adaptively controlled because lower pH water (like acid rain) dissolves more limestone, making bigger tunnels and caves through which more water can flow, increasing treatment. I’m a fan.
Exactly: basic (alkaline).
On Monday, June 16, 2014, A Family Adventure of the 2,185 mile hike from Georgia to Maine – 2014 wrote:
No wonder you got a d studying the pH of groundwater… I was just trying to creek a joke (funny H+H+, not funny HaHa). From now on (like Mother Nature) I’ll try to stay neutral in my engineering assessments and let you keep an ion things here.
A quote (not mine) on engineering: “Remember we put a man on the moon before we put wheels on a suitcase.”
Let’s hear it for Orion! Unsung hero and pal to all. Happy Father’s Day to you RobinHood!
What a great adventure! Glad to see Robin Hood still has his “trail magic” hiking poles! Best of luck!
I love this pic of Robin Hood!
Good job Orion!
Good boy Orion! And Happy Father’s Day, All In. So glad you are having such a great extended season with your kids and Emily!
I’m glad to see you liked the water treatment system at Rausch Gap. Last year I volunteered up there to shovel limestone to refill the two chambers. That system will dissolve about 1200 lbs of limestone per week. Simple, yet very effective, there is even fish starting to repopulate downstream. You can see it in the color of the discharge water.