On Saturday I received a phone call right when I woke up. It was my buddy, Lewis, who said he’d been pounding on my door all morning. I slept in late and didn’t hear a thing. He asked if I want to go camping. I said “heck yea,” and he said, “Okay, I’ll be down in thirty minutes.”
I have all my camping gear ready to go for alarms like these,so I just have to slide down the fire pole and throw it in the engine, that is my Ford Ranger. Sure enough Lewis was down in thirty, and we took off to a place on the reservation I’ve never been, Cooper Lake, with another friend, Juan, and his two kids. The spot was beautiful to say the least.
Here’s Lewis and one tenacious little firebuilder and feeder of Magpies--the girl. A magpie is what's sitting on Lewis's shoulder.
Baby magpies. They poop a lot.
Camp all set up, I decided to scout out the ridgeline and scare off all the grizzlies. I didn’t find any of them, although I did hear a long, lone howl of a mother wolf, probably reminding me that I was visitor there, and I best behave. Then, after that stopped me dead in my tracks in awe, her pups started up, which I was able to catch on my camera. Check it out.
When I got back to camp, I found Lewis had made a real rib-stickin, mountain man meal. It was delicious!
These two sure thought so too.
Then, when the light was good for photos, I took another short walk and snapped this one of our camp in the background and, in the foreground, Jax, who could have responded to his fellows had he accompanied me on my hike earlier, half wolf that he is
That night the wind died down, and I got a great sleep on my cot outside my truck. The stars even made an appearance, the milky way and all, and we all woke almost simultaneously in the middle of the night to admire them. The next morning, Lewis cooked us up another mountain meal, and we struck camp, heading out the same way in which we came.
Here’s Lewis’s salty little Toyota. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone do anything with a vehicle like I’ve seen him do in this truck… like stuff on a 30 degree incline and the only way up, driving 100 yards with one tire in a muddy, two-foot rut sloping toward a thousand foot drop, at least. I was hanging out the passenger window the whole time ready to bail away from the drop, until we got stuck. Then, I did bail, because the next thing the crazy man did, after his winch burned out, was gun his motor, rocking back and forth till he shot out of there and to the top like a rocket. But that’s Lewis, and according to him, that little adventure was “nothing to sweat,” and no worries, on this drive, these kids had it easy.
Juan and the magpies. The gate to main road and back home. Thanks for reading!