Saturday, January 12, 2008
The entire family went out to Raccoon River Park in West Des Moines today. I wore the Skippy Peanut Butter backpack. You can see the Skippy water bottle in the pocket. I think the water bottle is hard to use because I need to use two hands to drink from it. It definitely was designed for the backpack, or the backpack was designed for it. It's a perfect fit.
We attempted to reach the island, former home of a geocache called Raccoon River Island, and current home of GC15HNN, Here on NVG's Isle! My kids differ with the NVG on the name, but when they claimed the island for themselves years ago, they never let him know. In fact, I didn't even know who the NVG was back then. So Scott, we will not fight with you over the name. The island does not care what anyone calls it anyway. I think it wants everyone to create a personal name for and relationship with it.
Getting to the island would have involved six of us passing open water and slush. And five of us weigh over 100 pounds. So Mr. GAIN and I were nervous about getting there, even though I knew from past trips that the water must be shallow. "N" of GAIN was very disappointed to leave, but he was a very good sport about it. I was too lazy for months to get the FTF, STF, etc. with the boat. I figure out how to get there, though. If I used the inflatable boat, I could have launched, beached, and disembarked without a lot of difficulty.
Without the underbrush, our walk around Blue Heron Lake was awesome. Getting to the different fingers of land was a piece of cake. Walking to the bird blind was a cinch (and cool). Seeing the wind sailors and kite sailors through the trees and grass was a snap (and fun to watch). We had never made it all the way around the lake's 3.2 mile trail until today, and we were quite proud to say that we did it.
We attempted another cache, GC157YN, Down, Out, and Broke, but the gps-r said we had another 250' to go, into the river.
We also found what one of the kids called a beaver buffet line. You can see it here. We also saw a tree that the beavers had chosen to abandon, even though they gnawed it close to falling. Maybe the sap was sweeter on the other side.
On the way out of the park, I felt joy when I spotted GC13ZPR, Man in Black #4 from a distance. I cannot believe I never found this during the warm months. I must have looked at it a dozen times but didn't recognize it for what it was with all the foliage.