Today is Wednesday, August 16, 2017

The Wrong River

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Center Hill Dam

Have you checked out our newest contribution in our county? You must go to our, The Wilson Post on Facebook, like us, and scroll down untill you find the video of, "Wilson Post in Motion". Here you will find local news and happenings before they hit the print. If you get lucky on the right day, you will find me and Anthony Gray, or maybe even a guest, let you in on what's going on in my article, Our Feathered Friends. This is a very exciting new field, headlined by our very own, Becky Andrews and Zack Owensby. Check it out and you will be looking forward to the next one.

Saturday morning gets here and I have to force myself out of bed to get ready for our safari. I asked Anthony , where are we going today? He said, the lake, so I figured that we would head to the Cumberland River area. After fueling up at Speedway on South Cumberland, we head east on Maddox Simpson toward Sparta Pike.

Coming out at the traffic light, we turn right, toward Watertown. I asked Anthony, I thought we were going to the lake? We are, Center Hill Lake. Oh! It's been a while since I have been up that way. So much has changed. We head through Watertown, Alexandria and Liberty. Thank goodness, the "Mule" is still standing on the rock face on the old quarry. I believe that Ken Beck wrote a story a few years ago on how the "Mule" came into existance.

We come through a small community called, "Dismal", I wonder how that name came into being. Here's Dowelltown, you had better slow this vehicle down to 45mph or they will catch you.

This is the time of the year that I call the "Summer Doldrums". Others may call it the dog days of summer, really the same, but different. Bird life is scarce with some of the species looking ragged, where feathers have been worn out. Check out the picture with this article on the male Cardinal with the Goldfinch on my feeder. I was very happy to see that my Cardinal family hatched out two female Cardinals, instead of a Cowbird, like last year. Gold finch will nest later in the year than most other species. But not to worry, our Cardinals will soon show up with a fresh set of feathers.

Driving up Snow's Hill is not nearly as bad as it used to be, since T-DOT improved the approach a few years ago. We take a left on Highway 96, or Dale Ridge Road. This is a long winding road that makes its way across the steep hills and valleys toward Cove Hollow Road that crosses the top of Center Hill Dam.

We get out of the car, hoping to find a few birds in the area, but only hear the "Cawing" of a few American Crows. They were generating and the water almost seemed to boil as it passed through the turbines and on out of the dam. Don't let the term, boil, fool you as the water seems to be ice cold after it comes out on the other side. This is a great place to catch trout. Many people were braving the swift water in kayaks, while others were just dipping their toes in the cold water. Before we got back into the car, we could hear the song of an American Goldfinch, which stayed under the cover of the thick stand of trees.

Just around the corner on Highway 141, was the entrance to Edgar Evins State Park. Another winding road, takes you to the camping and cabin area. The campgrounds are built on piers, on the steep hills. That would not be a good place, if one was a sleepwalker.

We head back to town on I-40, crossing the Caney Fork River five times as it meanders on it's long journey to the Cumberland River, just east of Carthage. Several years ago, my brother paddled his canoe all the way from the dam, to a take out point here in Wilson County. I wish that I was able to do this, but it will keep on being, just a wish.

Alright, Peking Chinese Resturaunt is calling our names. Sitting in my favorite booth, eating my special dish, I can see a Red-tailed Hawk, sitting on top of one of the tall light fixtures behind Ruby Tuesdays. Is this our old friend? Could be.

This coming weekend, I will be camping at the Cedars of Lebanon State Park, where I will be doing an Owl Prowl on Friday night. This time, I plan to have frest batteries on me so my son, Jason Pope and his wife, April , won't have to trek back to my van to fetch new ones. On this trip, my cousin, Sherrie Gann Perry, from Huntsville Alabama will be camping just a stones throw away.

How many Hummingbirds do you have visiting your feeders? Just in my front yard, there are probably six or more fighting over who owns the nectar. Diana Bright and I were sitting at the outdoor table when one of them zoomed just over her head. She was afraid of becoming impaled with one of the speed demons. They are swift.

I would love to hear from you as to what's lurking about in your neighborhood and at your feeders. You can write me at, 606 Fairview Ave., Lebanon, TN, 37087, or e-mail me at, rpope15@bellsouth.net

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Our Feathered Friends
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Anthony Gray, April Pope, Becky Andrews, Jason Pope, Ken Beck, Liz Franklin, Ray Pope, Zack Owensby
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