Sunday, May 27, 2012

"Frankly, Sclarlett, I don't give a dam...."

 East bound on the Spokane River at 35mph

I slept in until almost 7am Saturday....that's kind of late for me.  Elaine stayed in bed until after 8am.......she says "Clarke, you take your nap in the afternoon.......I take mine after you get up in the morning".......haha!

I puttered around writing my daily blog, and then while the girls went to the Farmer's market, and George went over to ready his ski boat for an afternoon of boating on the lake I got busy washing and detailing the 'Bird, and then washing the coach AGAIN!.  You will recall that I washed the Newell and trailer a day, or so before we departed South Jordan.  Well, the day we left it started raining, and rained for 100 miles, so all my detailing work went down the drain.  So, I started in washing the coach for a second time within a week.  Three hours later I was done, but no one was home yet so I went in to take my nap......I was one tired boy.  Thankfully it continues to be very cool, and dry here in the Northwest.  I know it is baking in most the rest of the country this weekend, but for a change I'm in the right place!

George and the girls got home by 3:30pm, and we headed over to the boat ramp to launch the Baja ski boat and headed out into the wind swept Lake Coeur d'Alene.  Fortunately it was not too wind swept, but just breezy.   

 One of hundreds of beautiful homes around the Coeur d'Alene area

Lake Resort in background

George took us by some homes of the Rich and Famous, including the summer homes of John Elway and Jake Plummer....both former NFL quarterbacks of some fame.  It's a nice life I guess, and someone's got to live it.

 John Elway's summer home on left and Jake Plummer's summer home on right......"Are you ready for some football?"

We then headed back across the lake (by the way we barely scratched the surface, so to speak, of this enormous lake) to see the world's only "floating green" at Coeur d'Alene Resort Golf Course, seen below.  This is a stock picture from the internet....the little boat in the foreground ferries golfers to and from shore.  The drive to the green is approximately 175 yards.  Most people we watched hitting on to the green came up short I mean they hit the water.

14th hole, a floating green!  

We then headed over to the Spokane River which drains Lake Coeur d'Alene, and flows westward to Spokane.  You can boat westward on the river about 10 mile to Post Falls where the dam is that controls the level of the lake, and that stretch of the river.  Because there is still runoff from the winter's snow the dam gates are wide open right now to prevent flooding.  As we neared the "dam" there were warning signs that the dam was only 1/4 mile further, and not to go further.  Well, we did go further, and suddenly found that we were in shallow water.....too shallow for the outdrive prop to move us as it was hitting the mud and sand on the bottom of the river.  Hmmmmm......isn't this what happens in movies?  You're sitting there in your seat thinking why are they ignoring the sign?  It's like "don't go down into that dark basement with the broken light bulb"....nothing good ever comes of that, does it?  Well, we weren't that far from shore, and it was shallow enough that we could have walked out easily, even though the water is VERY COLD!  However, we were continuing to drift down river toward the dam, and that is never a good idea, so first George hopped out and began to push the boat to deeper water, but combined with the current pushing the boat the other way, and a slight breeze, he was having difficulty making much progress, so I quickly pulled off my polar tech jacket, emptied my pockets of electronics, money/credit cards, ID, etc. and jumped into the 2' deep, freezing water to help.....I am so thankful I had worn shorts, and my water shoes.  Within a couple of minutes, with our combined pushing efforts, and being cheered on by the girls, we got it back into 4' water, and stiffly (my legs were losing feeling quickly) climbed back into the boat the fired up the motor, and extricated ourselves from the DAM area.

Brenda had brought several beach towels in case we got wet, even though George insisted at the outset that no one was going to get wet (haha!), so they came in handy to dry us off (by the time we got back into the boat the water was up past our abdomens), and to cover us while we headed back eastward on the river to the boat launch area.  I want to emphasize that we were not physically in any danger, and could have waded to shore, and just abandoned the boat if necessary, but it seemed at the time that we could save the boat easily with two of us in the water pushing.  The current was not that strong where we were, but, nevertheless, I was very concerned for a few minutes....who wouldn't be?

The first picture at the top of this blog entry was taken after the "DAM" incident.....the ride back "up" the river to the boat launch area was very pretty as we skimmed along over glass like water at 35mph.

Later that evening George BBQ'd up some lamb burgers, and Brenda and Elaine provided the salad and summer squash.  We downed a bottle of local red wine, and talked until almost 11pm.  Another nice day.....but not quite uneventful!

Thanks for stopping by!

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