Sunday, September 21, 2008

wait a minute- logs don't have eyes....do they?

after wasting three saturdays in a row (only three?), i dragged (well, technically he drove) SO out on a long-overdue hike. santee state park is about an hour and a half from home, which allowed me enough time to wipe out a book (i was almost done) and grab a five minute snooze....which ended about the time we realized we'd somehow overshot the park.

why santee? well, since i work at the radio station until noon on saturdays and SO was barely in the shower when i got home, there was pretty much a zero chance of being able to get up to the waterfall-laden upstate region of south carolina and have enough time to tackle a decent hike and be off the trail by dark. plus, gas in columbia is still a pricey $3.99 a gallon and no, you do not get kissed first. not even a hug, in fact. (i got funny looks when i asked at the local gas station on friday.)

so, we were left with mostly local options....most of which have already been checked off in my handy dandy hiking book.

it should be noted that the handy dandy hiking book might be in need of a little update as, assuming i was reading the map properly, the "swimming pond" looks like this:


(it's probably worth noting that about 100 feet further down the shoreline, if that, there were not one, not two, but three signs advising against swimming and warning of the presence of alligators.)

there was an incident last september where a guy actually disregarded the "no swimming" signs, went snorkeling with a gator, and would up losing an arm, which was retrieved (intact, no less!) from the alligator's stomach. i thought this may have been the "swimming hole" in question, but a little googling proved me wrong.

mr. "snorkels with gators" survived, but i'm thinking he still should get an honorable mention in the next darwin awards book.

SO, was a little uneasy about my trekking down near the water's edge to have a look at the "no swimming" signs. (no worries- they were out in the open, and i would've spotted the gator before he spotted me.)

after leaving the shoreline, we drove to the sinkhole trail for one last mini hike. (with the exception of the bicycle trail, the trails at the park are under a mile long, and at .4 mile, this one's the shortest.) i'm pleased to report there weren't any gators in sight on this trail, which was a good thing, though SO said he had my back in the event of a possible attack:

7 comments:

Larry said...

Wow, that is pretty disturbing. Not your hiking story, mind you. The pictures on that googled story you linked. You can see the dude's arm in the gator's mouth.

duff said...

larry: if you scroll down and click on the link at the bottom of the news story, you can view the pictures on a larger scale. not only do you see the dude's arm, but you can see the bone sticking out and all.....

this is why i refuse to practice my snorkeling skills anywhere near potentially carnivorous wildlife.

Larry said...

Don't get in a pool with a male instructor then.

Bite Me said...

I think I'd be with SO and be hiking behind you too. Oh wait, you know, covering your back. ;-)

Callie said...

Yeah, I was thinking your SO was doing more than just "covering your back". In fact, I have a feeling if some carnivorous wildlife crept up, he might not notice as soon as he would hope.

Colin said...

What we all seem to be trying to say is, good shooting, SO.

duff said...

larry: touche.

dude: he was behind me for most of yesterday's hike, too. however, i had the camera in my pocket, in an effort to help him focus.....or something like that.

callie: on the birght side, i can outrun him, so if something crept up behind us, hopefully he'd at least scream or something so i could get away.

colin: judging from all of the photos devoted to this subject matter, he paracticed getting the shot for quite some time. i packed extra batteries for yesterday's hike, just in case.