Here's the final update for my 2009 journeys up to Tennessee and to Blue Hole. :)
|June 17th and 18th||Wednesday and Thursday roadtrip made!||
My friend Chris, aka "Onionhead," came along, his first trip up to Blue Hole in around six years. Water about a foot higher than last year's trickle into the tunnel area, but the water was warm enough to not need wetsuits. More clouds than sun on Wednesday, but vice-versa for Thursday, and I'm paying for it now with a nice red sunburn! It was well worth it, though, as I was in the river a solid 15 hours between both days. (!)
On Wednesday my oft-seen-at-Blue-Hole friend Asa appeared, and on Thursday two guys who were actively searching out swimming holes found me, since they read THIS itinerary, knew I'd be there and chose that day to come to Blue Hole from Nashville in order to get a good tunnel tour. There was also a sizeable 'invasion' of middle-school kids on Thursday for several hours...almost enough to get me to head on up to Little Blue Hole for some peace and quiet. :) All in all, a great time! Pics from June 2009 are now here! Videos will follow shortly!
|July 1st-3rd||Three-day Wed., Thurs. and Friday roadtrip made!||Wow, this was a fun time! Chris came along again and also my friend Adam, who I met at the Georgia Rennaissance Festival. Weather was dry all three days and decently warm, although sometimes the wind was chilly. Pics from the trip are here. Go to this playlist on YouTube for 2009 videos!|
|July 15th and 16th||Wednesday and Thursday roadtrip made!||
The water was actually about 2 feet higher than normal on Tuesday due to a TVA water release, so it was a bit cloudier than normal on Wednesday and I didn't get any underwater vids. We also didn't get any rain either day while up at Blue Hole, despite a dire forecast for Thursday (a severe thunderstorm actually pounded the area overnight). My friend Chris rode up with his neighbor Cliff and his girlfriend and met me up there. Even as I was walking up to Blue Hole from my car, someone recognized me from a YouTube video comment. Met lots of cool folks including Lisa and her 'brood' of 3,
who helped me spot some missing loaned-out masks. Also saw Marcus and James again. All in all, a great trip!
Sadly, the four videos I took on Thursday were apparently munged by the camera and can't be 'read.' Sorry about that, folks!
|rescheduled to August 5th and 6th||Thursday and Friday roadtrip made!||Almost a perfect trip, with not too many large tourist groups but a decent number of people up there and great weather! My friend Randall and his son Siddhartha (yes really) were able to join me briefly on Friday before I had to leave early to get back in time for my sister's birthday gathering.|
|August 12th and 13th||Wednesday and Thursday roadtrip made!||Higher water level than last week due to lots of rain, which cleared out even while I was driving up there. Very uncrowded now as many school systems are back in session, but lots of sunshine and surprisingly warm, if slightly cloudier than normal, water. I'm still evaluating the few pics and vids I got during these last two journeys.|
|August 26th and 27th||Wednesday and Thursday roadtrip made!||
This was my last trip up there for Summer 2009. The weather and water were nearly perfect on Wednesday but there were very few people present...no more than 20 people all afternoon. My friends Randall and April invited me to stay at their house overnight and April cooked a wonderful dinner, so that was great, as was my friend Dirk's visit, with rum obtained during his honeymoon in Costa Rica. They killed the bottle, I just watched and enjoyed the show. :)
The weather on Thursday was iffy with lots of showers in the area so I didn't stay in the water too long, but I did conduct a search of the river right in front of the Whitewater Center and found a couple of tunnels I'd seen before...plus another pretty amazing three-way tunnel that I don't remember. I tested it and it seemed like I would fit through it, but with no-one else anywhere nearby to 'spot me' I decided against a full attempt. There's always next year!
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