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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Day 4: James River State Park to Sycamore Island

Today we started our day earlier than usual, at 6:30am rather than 7am. Breakfast was delicious and consisted of yogurt, granola, and fruit. At 8am we had fly fishing lessons from the Project Healing Waters volunteers. Project Healing Waters is an organization that utilizes the sport of fly fishing as therapeutic rehab for veterans. To learn more about the important work they do, visit their website. Enough volunteers traveled all the way from Richmond for students to receive individual instruction for 3 hours. Everyone enjoyed learning how to tie their own flies and many people caught small mouth bass. Students enjoyed improving their fly-fishing skills, and our time with the volunteers went very quickly.

After our fly fishing lesson, we packed our canoes and got on the river at about 11:30 for our 17-mile journey. Along the way we saw a blue herring, a bald eagle, a large fish, and many damsel flies. We hit some class 2 rapids today and had a fantastic time riding them. We can’t wait to paddle more rapids tomorrow!

We stopped for lunch at a small beach and made ham and cheese wraps. Although we had a great day on the river, we did have a few mishaps. Michael lost his hat, many people got sunburned, and we are all in various stages of wet, soggy, and moist.

After lunch time we still had lots of distance to cover, so Lena made a bet with us that if we could all stay ahead of her canoe (which she was paddling solo) she would cook dinner for us. We all worked extra hard and worked very well together as a group, and to her chagrin, Lena ended up with all the dishes while we loafed in the lap of luxury. This evening, camp was more difficult to set up, because we are in a smaller space due to overgrowth, but we have a beautiful view.

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