Well, another member's meet is now in the books and embedded into my memory. I began my trip on Sat, July 10th, 2010 at 8:30am. With boat in tow, I headed west 129 miles to Goose Island Campground where we hold the yearly meet. After a couple wrong turns along the way, I pulled up to the camp office at noon on the dot. Once checked in, I found Dave (davesett2000) and John (bottonline) getting their sites ready. Once I pulled up to mine which is right on the shore of the Mississippi River - I found that the weeks of rain prior to us getting there caused the river raise high enough that we only had half a site to use. Tents were pitched and cars unpacked, dinner plans for the night were to just go into town for Chinese.
John checking out the high water
Dave taking a break
First night sunset
Sunday found us sleeping in and then working on getting ready boats for launching so we could park them on the shoreline and more unpacking. For supper I made us all some slow cooker brats, kraut, and summer pasta salad. The coons later that night found a stash of not properly put away trail mix, bag of candy and a bag of marshmellows. :rofl1: :cussin:
Monday was finally a day to get out and fish. Boated on my end were 4 smallmouths during the morning trip and 20 plus bluegills and perch.
A photo of me and the NAFC traveling tie
Monday night I made my saucey sauce BBQ chicken legs with fries and corn for the crew. The coons again found away to break into a locked cooler and took off with eggs, lunch meat, and a pound of butter.
After dinner, I hooked up with Larry - (FlatheadWI) in hopes of spending the night hunting for a HUGE flathead to out do last years. But due to a major boat problem, we had to call it quits after the first spot we checked out.
Tuesday was spent just enjoying the scenery and weather and the roaring fire as I wasn't feeling the best and really wiped out from the past couple of days - Steaks along onions and mushrooms, salad, and fries is what I had planned for the group for supper - yum yum.
Wed found us out on the water and waiting for the rest of the group to arrive as this day was the official start of the meet - some of us just like to get there a few days early.
Rich (Storyteller) with a couple of his fish
Dinner is now in the hands of Jerry (rodtender) and served at the main meeting area.
Lou (retired psg) and Laura (Lazarus's wife)
Once the camp fires were started, we noticed a storm forming over on the Minnesota side of the river.....
Once night came - cell phones started going off with loved ones warning us of the storm coming.....
We sat and watched the lightening for awhile and I retired to my tent once the rain started....
Once in my tent, I was sitting in my chair trying to get ready for bed when the wind came.....HARD and straight on. The wind pushed the top of my tent down onto my head and the force pinned me into my chair for over a half hour. All I could do was just sit there and listen to the force of the storm, hard heavy rain, thunder so loud you could feel the hair start to stand straight up on your head....and the wind - that wind I'll never forget. Once the wind let up enough to where I could sat, I found myself standing in a couple of inches of water pooling on the floor of the tent - a quick hop into the air bed found me landing into another pool of water.....everything was soaked and getting wetter. Another 1/2 hour more of the storm pounding on us and everything let up enough for us all to exit our tents to see what the damage was and to make sure everyone was ok. We just couldn't believe our eyes. Tents bent and smashed and flooded. The main meeting area trashed. A RV had it's awing bent completely back over the top. Trees downed and flooding every where. Most everyone decided to spend the rest of the night sleeping in their cars - I tried but just couldn't get comfortable so I went into the flooded tent and striped the bed down of all the wet bedding and just slept on the bare air bed. Once I was sleep for an hour - I was awaken by the noise of bags being moved. I grabbed the flash light and shown it in the direction of the noise. A RACCOON broke into my tent via the little door at the bottom of the tent used for the extension cords. Because he was caught and then freaked out - he couldn't figure out how to get back out which really pissed him off. My neighbor was John (bottomline) so I started to scream for him to come help out......the tent door was opened and the coon took off dragging along a bag of chips that were tossed into the tent and forgotten about when it started to rain earlier........10 minutes later the same coon was back - jimmied open the little door again - popped his head in far enough to grab the other bag of discarded chips and then sat on the tarp outside my door - opened the bag of chips and sat on his hind legs sitting there eating the chips all the while I have a flashlight on him and I am yelling at him to leave. I no longer find the raccoons so cute.... :cussin:
This is the mess we woke to in the morning - it was later told to us that we had straight line winds gusting at over 60 miles an hour
Needless to say - no fishing got done on Thusday - between spending the day cleaning up the mess and all the water and just from lack of sleep - we all just kind of kept quiet and relaxed once the clean up was done and thanked God for the fact that no one was hurt during this storm.
John (bottomline) found sleeping in front of the fire.
Friday found us out fishing again and enjoying the day and beauty of the river
Thurdays night after dinner, it was decided that we would take my boat out for a flathead hunt with Larry being the guide and Cindy (catfish cindy) joining us.
After a few "a hit and a miss", Cindy hook into a 13 pounder
Next was my turn and I boater a 8 pounder
Once on shore
Friday was also the 3rd annual Pie Eating contest
This year I made cream pies
Team Jared/Ray (Lazarus)
Team Cindy (catfish cindy)/Laura
Team Dani/John (bottomline)
Team Jerry (rodtender)/Melinda
Team Tom (canepole)/Cheri (muskygirl)
Our kids team was Hannah and Cami (our kids winner)
And the PIE FACE is..........
Team Jared/Ray won the contest finishing their pie in 2 minutes and 41 seconds
This year - I changed the prize from tackle to medals - they turned out pretty cool
Where did it all go?
Saturday was more fishing, relaxing, enjoying one another's company, pot luck dinner, prize give aways, and worship service.
Sunday was pack up and move out by noon.......it is always sad to leave it all behind.....
A huge thanks to Jerry and Tom for all you do to make this meet happen, to everyone who gave to the prize give away, to Linda and Allen for some camera lessons, to John for all your help to me, to John, Dave, Cindy, Rich, and Larry for sharing in the fishing time together, and to God for keeping us all safe and allowing us to gather once again along the shores of the great and beautiful Mississippi River.