Boats and Burly Bridges

Well after three final crew member visits to the doctor for poison oak we are finally done with Markley Cove and back to Smittle Creek Trail. It has been a busy nonstop four weeks filled with training and new projects.  Over the past month we have maintained  3,425 feet of trail, relocated one 12 foot bridge (with new footings), removed seven old steps, added thirteen new steps,  added three new  drainage structures, dismantled one bridge, assembled one burly twenty foot bridge from scratch, moved  5,460 lbs of concrete down to the bridge project site by hand, moved  900 lbs of concrete  back up the hill from the bridge project site, created  three rigging highlines, mapped  several trails using GIS,  gained six new Leave No Trace Master Educators, five S212 approved B sawyers, dug two very big holes and had one Easter egg hunt. I think it would be safe to say we have accomplished a lot in the last month and we were ready for a break. So naturally when Ryan mentioned that we get would our first real days off in a couple months and that he had rented a boat for us to go waterskiing, tubing, and wakeboarding we were a bit excited. When Wednesday finally arrived we drove over to Markley hopped onto the boat and headed out for some fun. After going only a few hundred yards from the boat slip we to found ourselves making a quick u-turn to admire the stairs we built on pullout thirteen and fourteen before we made a quick sprint across Lake Berryessa. Once across the lake Chris was the first one to break out the water skis and jumped into the chilly water. He easily made it up on his first try. After a few runs Chris called it quits and jumped back into the boat to warm up and it was Andy’s turn to try and wakeboard. It took him only a few tries to get the hang of it and considering he had never been on a wakeboard before it was pretty impressive. As it began to warm up, Ben and I jumped on the tube and tried to hang on as we were slung around the turns. We weren’t successful.  We spent the rest of the afternoon soaking up the sun and alternating between skiing and tubing. Both Ben and Megan found that waterskiing was much harder than Ryan and Chris made it look but both successfully managed to stand up even if it was only a moment.  After Chris and Ryan took their last turn waterskiing we headed back to the marina. Not long after we arrived at the marina a life flight helicopter landed only a few hundred yards away. If it had not been there for a real emergency it would have been a really awesome way to end the day. That being said it was a great day and a lot of fun.