Saturday, September 06, 2008

An Earlier Expedition


The post yesterday brought to mind another excursion my brother and I had when we were very young in Canada. As I’ve mentioned several times before we would spend out summers on a lake in Canada.

One day someone asked us to portage one of their boats through the woods on a barely established path to a lake that was about a half mile from the lake we were on. The boat was a twelve-foot plywood boat so it was much lighter than the 16 foot boats that we used up there that were made from five-quarter and oak planks.

Our payment for this portage was that we were allowed to fish on the private lake in the woods. It was a small lake, maybe only ten acres, but the fishing there was great. My brother and I still talk of this place to this day.

As instructed, we left the boat there for its owner to use when he had the energy to hike up to that lake.

The following year by brother and I returned to Canada and we took the time to hike up to the small lake for some more of that great wilderness fishing. The boat was on the shore right where we had left it except there wasn’t much left of the boat.

Apparently the porcupines had eaten it. Any surface that had been touched by humans was eaten. The oars, the seats and the gunnels were all chewed. Holes were chewed in sections of the ply wood. The boat could no longer even hold rain water.

Having never experienced porcupines previous to this we learned that this little animal especially zones in on any wood that has the sweat or oil from human hands on it.

6 Comments:

Blogger Beth said...

Another lesson learned from Guy. I knew about beavers chewing wood but not porcupines.
We were once held hostage (our choice) when a porcupine decided to climb a tree within spitting distance of the cottage. He (she?) was pissed! It took hours until he/she settled down and waddled off.

4:56 AM  
Blogger Uncle Walt said...

Porcupines seem to be the opossums of the peninsula. Seems there's at least one porcupine roadkill each week on my way to work. Either that, or a beaver.

7:50 AM  
Blogger Auntie said...

I just love the thought of two old geezers spelunking through the wilds on your bicycles.

11:37 AM  
Anonymous colonel panic said...

That lake isn't shaped like anything in particular.

Disappointing.

12:11 PM  
Anonymous colonel panic said...

funny how some lakes just appear to be a rude "gash" in the earth, eh guy?

3:05 PM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Walt, now that you mention it, the only one I've ever seen since I moved out here was up in Tunerville. I haven't seen one in Oregon yet.

6:12 AM  

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