We started out from the Marina in Courthouse Bay in our canoes and kayaks.
We paddled around Harveys Point and began picking up trash and litter along the shore in front of the waterfront officers homes.
This shoreline is protected from erosion by rip-rap. This makes trash pick up very difficult. Here we are spread out along the shore recovering all man made litter.
The rip-rap ended just past the barracks and the shoreline became natural with sandy beaches and marsh grasses.
We came to Creels Point about lunch time and dined there on the point. Here we are packing up after lunch.
These folks motored up to fish and seemed interested in what we were doing.
As we finished lunch it became obvious that we could not paddle around this bay and make it to our take-out at Traps Bay.It was decided to paddle directly to Wilkins Bluff which we did. Scott and Elmer towing the trash barge fell back to the rear.
By the time we rounded Wilkins Bluff it became obvious we would never make it to the take-out in Traps Bay. A very strong head wind had sprung up from the south/southeast. (Northeast winds hadbeen predicted.) We immediately knew we had to turn around and head back to Courthouse Bay.
Very dark ominous clouds appeared. The wind became stronger. Dale had
managed to call all back but one. We decided Scott and I could make it back to Courthouse Bay going with this wind. Our truck was there anyway being the shuttle vehicle. All others continued on as originally planned.
Scott and I practically sailed back towing the trash barge. But low and behold the clouds got darker. Thunder and lightning got closer and closer and before we could get around Harveys Point into Courthouse Bay the wind had completely reversed itself and was blowing hard into our faces and with extremely bad gusts. The rain was coming down in torrents. The thunder was loud and the lightning flashes almost immediately following. We headed to shore and saw the back side of the rest room at the marina..
We pulled the canoes up and crawled across the rip-rap to the facility. That was a very difficult arduous crawl and climb.We waited out the storm inside the building. I took advantage of the facilities and took a hot shower in my clothes!
The storm quit and it became almost calm. We traversed the horrible rip-rap again back to the canoes and climber in and headed up toward the point. All of a sudden we could not make the canoe move forward any more. We turned around to find the trash barge had tipped over on its side and trash was every where.
The heavy down pour during the storm had filled the canoe with so much water it caused it to tip over. We unloaded the trash and tipped it over to get rid of the water. We also bailed the water out of our canoe too.
Having done this we were able to get back around the point to the marina. We were very surprised not to find the rest of our group there. As we were unloading we received a cell phone call from them saying they went to shore during the storm and could not find the take-out point. They asked me to drive back and blow
my horn so they would know where the take-out was.
By the time I got there, they were already there. Sherman had built a fire in all that rain and they were fine. Fishermen had directed them to the take-out. Dale said Sherman was as real survivor! How many people could do that!
All is well as it all ended well, but folks, had we simply stayed together, as we always should, we all could have turned around as soon as we rounded Wilkins Bluff and made it back to Courthouse Bay before the storm!
Let’s make this a lesson learned!
We thank all that came on this eventful day. It is strange how we happened to catch this “isolated thunder storm”.
The participants were: Sherman Hawkins from Goldsboro, Marian Adams from New Bern, Dale Weston from Jacksonville, Jack Cleaves from Cedar Point, Scott Brown from Morehead City, and Elmer Eddy from Swansboro.
The trash was heavy. Scott and I put ours in the dumpster at the marina. The others left theirs at the end of Traps Bay Road at the mouth of Traps Creek.
Elmer, The White Oak River Trashman
Stewards of The White Oak River Basin
101 River Reach Drive West,
Swansboro, NC. 28584
910-389-4588 e-mail: email@example.com
Please visit our website: http://www.whiteoakstewards.org/
“If no one litters, there will be no litter!”