Thursday, September 25, 2008

Chisholm Brook Campsite: Allagash Wilderness Waterway Canoe and Guide Training Trip Journal

September 16, 2006
I was up at 5:15AM again and it was partly sunny and warm. After collecting a bunch of twigs, I got the fire started from a coal leftover from the previous night. I ate GORP (our GORP contained Cheerios, raisins, peanuts, and m+ms) and canned milk and water. The rest of the group had millet and pears. I tried some and it was OK. I just can't get over thinking millet is birdseed. We packed and left by 9AM. We quickly paddled over to Scofield Cove to visit the spring where we filled our water jugs. Both Scofield sites are very nice with the point being the nicest. Devin lost his life jacket the previous day and we look for it as we paddle towards Churchill Dam. We feared that the wind grabbed it the day before and blew it far away. We meet a game warden in a Scott boat with a 10hp outboard on it. He motored around the shore looking for the life jacket for us as we continued to paddle on.We got to the dam about 11:30AM. I took some pictures at the dam and in the little museum. There was a cool stump puller and a rail car that looked like a motorcycle with a sidecar. We had to portage with the ranger since the water was too low for us to navigate Chase Rapids in the canoes. Fortunately, the ranger was happy to loan Devin a life jacket while we continued to look for the one he lost.
SUGGESTION: Bring an extra life jacket.The ranger took the first 6 canoes and gear around the rapids. It was a twenty minute ride through the woods. We ate lunch and poled up and down the rapids while the ranger went back for Tim, Bud, Devin, and the remaining canoes. I was starting to feel ill, so I rested while we ate lunch.
After lunch, we redistributed our gear load around so that we'd be a bit downstream heavy. That way the canoe pointed downstream. (RULE: load the canoe downstream and upwind heavy) I was pleased that I was able to pole up through the rapids and hit the eddys just right but I had really started to feel the dreaded head cold that Paul and Tim had the past few days. By now the sky had cleared off nicely and it was hot and sunny.
Everyone reloaded their canoes and we poled down to Chisholm Brook campsite which wasn’t that spectacular. While poling past Meadows campsite, we met a young female ranger who was looking for some biologists in a raft. Devin really liked her and we obligingly continued to tease him about this the rest of the trip.We arrived at 5:15PM and set up camp. I felt very poorly from my head cold. Dinner was a pound of bacon put into the boiled soaked beans with brown sugar. The bacon fat went into the sourdough biscuits. Right before dinner I caught an 8 and 10" chub. After dinner, Bud showed me how to scale the smaller fish, chop off its head, and gut it. I floured it and fried it in oil. The larger of the two fish, we boiled in the bacon fat covered fry pan in salted water. Both fish were surprisingly tasty for what is considered a trash fish.The lady ranger came downstream and talked to us for awhile. She was surprised to see us eating chub. Team New England (Devin and I) were set to be guides again the next day so we decided to get an early start. I went to bed early and hoped I'd feel better the next day.

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