Thursday, June 24, 2010


Devil Fern

Sweaty Grins

Swallowtail On Boy

Crawdad Smile

The View
We spent Father's day and our 9th anniversary camping at Pulltite. Although it was blazing hot, we kept much cooler out in the woods than we would've in the concrete city, in an ancient house with no airflow. We just hung out in the cool spring-fed river all day and it was cool enough by the time we went to sleep.
Despite some vulgar, loud, and annoyingly drunk neighbors, we enjoyed getting away from our regular life for a while. Just the usual before we left...gunshot wounds, shattered femur, shattered 9mm bullet in shattered femur.
Sister and Brother-in-law stayed a day and friends joined us for an evening.
Across the river is the historic Pulltite spring and cabin.
Cross upstream from the spring. It pours out so strong that it was scary. SCARY!!
But worth the short hike from the campground.
Powered by the spring’s daily 20-to-30-million-gallon outflow, gristmills operated here from the mid-1800s until 1911.
The mill being deep in the river valley indirectly gave the area its unique name.
It was a “tight pull” for mules and horses pulling wagonloads of ground meal from the mill to the hillsides above the village of Pulltite.
Jasper caught several lampreys which weirded us out quite a bit. They look like eels/snakes and bury themselves in the sand with a jerk and a wiggle.
We caught a lot of crawdaddies and minnows. And Banded Sculpins didn't have a chance with us in the water. Also a very large predaceous diving beetle.
A horsehair worm was on the camp shower floor and i wasn't pleased to see it. We both imagined it as a parasite that squirmed out of an unsuspecting camper. They are only parasites to insects though and harmless to humans.
While near the spring, we saw a pipevine swallowtail caterpillar. They are very strange looking with osmeterium, a retractable fleshy organ behind the head that is extruded when the caterpillar is alarmed. It looks a lot like a snail head.
Devil's Well is only a few miles away from Pulltite. Even though we had been there before, we had to go again. We didn't realize the first time that you have to turn on the light to see the underwater lake. It is neat, but not as neat as i expected? We gathered blackberries on the way back to the car.
We also drove through a virgin pine forest to the Roger Pryor Backcountry. 61,000 acres to explore including 15 miles of Current River as well as the Ozark Trail.
So much beauty. And no one brought home any ticks.

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