Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Heading Home

   Stanley is at the airport getting ready to head back to Arkie-land. It's been great having him up here but I know he's ready to get back to his family and sleep in his own bed. We had a wonderful time, lots of reminiscing some good camping and seeing a lot of really pretty country. We didn't get rich finding any gold but we sure had a lot of fun looking.
   Thanks everyone for following along I hope it wasn't too boring


   You know, it's kind of hard to say goodbye to your friend when your  not 100% sure it's not the last time. We are not as young as we used to be. It seems like the road ahead is not only shorter than the road behind but sometime it seems more like a short driveway. But, no matter, my friend was here and even if I was to go tomorrow I will always remember that. We have great plans for next year and for many years after but that's just the nature of people. After hearing about Jimmy Hollings (who was younger than us) you just never know. I know some folks may think think I'm a little on the morbide side but here's my thoughts on that subject. Thank you to all my classmates and friends. I am very honered and proud to have known each and ever one of you. I have lived my life as best as I could and I hope that at least some of you have been somewhat happy to have know me. There are a lot of things throughout my life that in retorspect I might wihich I could change but if I did I would not be the person I am today.
   I believe that everyone in this life can look back on the wrong desisions they have made and wish that they could go back in time and change them, but have you really thought them all the way through and realized what even the smallest change you might make make would effect the eople around you? You may not be totally hapy with your life but if you could just change just one thing who and how would it effect others? Would you have changed anothers life for the better or the worst? Had you decided to turn left instead of right hw would that impact on other peoples life To all of you I say, Be happy with who you are a pray that yu have in someway impacted others peoples lives in some small positive way. If you have put a small smile on even one childs face then your life has been worth liveing and you can meet your maker with a smile on you face!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Last Night

   It's hard to say good bye to friends but it is our last night. We've had fun, spent a few nights in the wild lookin for gold, we did find some but we're not going to get rich. Being out in the woods was the main thing anyway, finding gold would have been just the icing on the cake. Saw some really pretty country and met some really nice people but most important we just got to spend some quailty time together.
   Maybe next year, if our health holds out we're thinking about meeting in Nevada to do some more prospecting and metal detecting. We are looking forward to it. the only sour note in this whole trip was the word that one of our class mates and friends had passed away. We are thinking of you Jimmy and pray that you are waiting for us in a better place.
   Anyway, we spent the last night visiting some friends and having fun shooting the bull with people we enjoyed.

Campfire in the back yard. Steaks, corn on the cob and enjoyable company

Left to right Jim, Stan, Dorris,Debbie, Me, Becky, Bill

Me, Becky, Debbie

me, Becky and Bill

Me relaxing

the group


shooting the bull

Dorris's car, Stan wanted this for some reason

Mater Chief Jim, Retired Navy

Joey is going to miss Stan, his favorite chew toy

Justin and Lauren

 Max relaxing so he can go chase some more rocks

Me, in my monkey suit, Stanley wanted this so he can go back home and make fun of me!!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Taking it easy

   We just been taking it easy the last couple of days. We went down to Olympia on Sat to check out the farmers market and see the sand castles. Then over to the grand daughters on Sun to see the great-grand son.

Great grandson Aiden

No sand castles but some really neat stuff

Hard to believe they can pile the sand this high on a hot day

Grand daughter Chelsea

John and Dorris

Joey seems to think Stanley is his new chew toy

He had a rough night

more sand

Stanley want seed for thsi one but they were out
Finally found the seeds for this at the farmers market. They grow wild up here

Sunday, August 28, 2011

To our fallen friends

Jimmy Hollins, Sam Nunn, Nancy Rodgers, Leon Allen, Thomas Knuckles. You were and are our friends. We do and will miss all of you. We pray that you are in a much better place and are happy now and by our belief in Gods good graces we will see you again. Our prayers go out to your family and friends that they may somehow overcome their grief at your passing from the mortal world and come to believe that you are in a better place and watching over them with love in your heart. In this we pray.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Are We There Yet???

   We went sight seeing today, not because we wanted to but the map we had wasn't worth a damn. We were trying to find a gold claim down south ot the Cowlitz river so we drove all over hell and half of Georgia and finally managed to find the place only to find that the creek was WAY down from the trail. We figured we could get down to the creek that was the easy part, of course we weren't sure what kind of shape we would be in when we got there (falling down a cliff is easy after all) but we werenT sure about the getting back out part. After about three hours of driving through some really pretty country we finally found a couple of places we could at least check out the water. No luck on the gold but if you're going to get lost (we weren't really lost, we knew where we were just not where we were going) this state is a great place to be lost in.

Stanley is checking out a little creek we found

really pretty one

lots of boulders in the creek but there was a nice "old man" trail getting down to it

We kept getting strong hits with the dectectors but what evey it was it was to deep to dig to

I tried panning a little but getting bent over like this is a lot rougher than I remember it. Sometimes I forget that prospecting is hard work! 
This is the trail going down to the claim. We left the house before eight and finally found this place around one. If we would have had a decent map we could have gotten there in an hour

It looks really close in the picture but it is about fifty feet down to the gravel bar from the trail

We found another trail on the other side of the river where we could get down close to the water. he is checking out some rocks

He found one

 Stanley is heading back down the trail from teh first claim

This cedar log was used as part of the old bridge over the creek

Stanley was really impressed with this little knob. It only sticks up a few hundred feet above the forest, lots bigger ones around here.

 Stanley heads back home Wen. the 31st so we might just be doing sightseeing for teh next few days.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

One More Try

   OK, we're not totally giving up. We going down below Randle tomorrow to a gold claim that belongs to the GPAA ( I belong to them) tere's is supposed to be flake gold down there. We're going to see if we can dig enough ground to run a few buckets through the sluice. I havn;t been to this claim but I have been on the ceek that it's in and the best I can remember there are lots of bolders, at least on the part I've seen. I'm hoping there,s bedrock somewhere on the claim because our best shot will be having bedrock close enough to the surface for us to find before our backs give out.

Mt Si Gold

   The good news, we did find gold. The bad news, what we found is flour gold. It is so fine it's really hard to seperate it from the black sand. The heaver gold has filtered down either to bedrock or to a clay layer and since neither of us are able to work a shovel well enough to get to either of those we are just kind of S.O.L. I know there is larger gold there and it is really frustrating not to be able to get to it.
   I did find one rock with a very small vein running through it which I'm giving to Stanley. He can sit it on his wood stove along with the one we found last time he was here. I hate to that I might have to give up prospecting after loving it for so many tears but after these two trips I might have to think about it. Between the breathing and the back there is just know way I could put in those ten to twelve hour days that it takes to get the gold out. Now it's more like I spent one hour working and eight recouperating!
  Again, we still enjoyed ourselves and had lots of fun. It's easy to enjoy youself when you out in such beautiful country. We kept watching for Bigfoot. We were in perfect country for him to put in an apperence but if he was around we never saw him. The one good wildlife sighting Stanley missed. He had just left to retrive the sluce box so we could move to a different camp when a small black bear walked right by the end of the road we were on. I grabbed the camera and tried to get up to take a picture but all I saw when I got to the main road was a glimpse of his butt heading up through the trees.
   Our second camp was below the Goat Rocks but as much as we stared at them we never did see there namesake. We would wade across the creek, do our panning then wade back and have to change britches and hang our shoes over the fire to dry.That water is COLD! The way we stumbled around in it looking for rocks we were really lucky neither of us fell face first into it.

The Smokey Mountains, This cliff is well over a thousand feet tall

Really pretty, It never got foggy down where we were at.

Stanley has to have breakfast before we could go anywhere

They rebuilt the old cedar bridges that used to be on this road but why they put such a BRIGHT one here is a mistery to me

Our second camp, we had to get close to the water because it was killing us to walk down to it

This is where I found the one rock with the small vein

Working the sluice, lots of really fine gold

Part of the Goat rocks

All of the gravel in back of Stanley was depoited there buy the water action of the spring floods. In front of his is the island that acks a giant sluice box causing all the heavey material to settle . We could get really strong readins here with the metal detectors. The problem was that the water in front of the island is about four feet deep and the readings come from the bottom. A dredge would be the only way to clear it out. 

No panning here but it sure is pretty.

Stanley working hard to dig about two feet, we needed to go at least six

This trail felt a lot steeper than it looks

Gold in the pan but to fine to seperate from the black sand

He's either just standing in the sun or he is steaming as his shoes and pants dry out from wading the creek

Stanley really liked this cow?

The water here is about 42 degrees, it will cool you beer and your toes!