Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Day 15, August 30, 2009 The Best Day of My Life!

Matt McCabe
ECOEE Journal

Day 15- Sunday, August 30, 2009

This is the best day of my life! This might be a backwards way of starting a journal but here I am; laying in a bivy sack underneath a bright moon, and a sky full of stars. We found ourselves here on this rocky inlet beach on the shores of lake Manitowik after paddling an eight mile stretch from the Blue Bay. This venture took us nearly the entire day. We packed up camp and were on the water by 9:40 this morning after a few minor set backs. After paddling about 3 miles we hit big winds ad waves on the open lake. We decided we should stop at a sandy beach to eat lunch and wait for the winds to die down. It took some convincing from Jeff, this turned out to be a pretty good decision. Although, since we did miss the campground at red rock, those two hours of passing time could have turned out useful when finding a place for dinner and shelter. Now though, as I lay here on this beach for our first bivvy challenge I could not be happier.
On a side note I would like to reflect on one of the most valuable lessons from today. Jeff taught us about leadership and decision making today. The basis is that all decision we make our based on a sliding continuum ranging from unconscious/incompetent down the line to unconscious competent. I realize that we all fall in different categories on this scale depending on our past experiences and also by the task at hand.
Jeff also told us a very sad story about outdoor leaders he knew who made the wrong decisions in a situation and it costing them their lives. Although I did not think paddling right after lunch was that risky, looking back I should have been more conservative. Point taken; hopefully lesson learned.
Tomorrow we have another 6.5 miles to go before our first portage at little stony portage. Since we are tired and maybe sore from today, I hope we manage to paddle well tomorrow; or at least not paddle like “ a bunch of drunken ducks”. P.s. Pete earned his nickname today: Fete Collins!

Good Night - One Love Matt McCabe

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