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P.O. Box 925516
Houston, Texas
77292-5516



The Houston Canoe Club 

is a Paddle America Club


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HomeNL-2012-06 Tree Climber

Campfire Tales: The Tree Climber
by
Paul Woodcock


The year before I joined the canoe club a friend loaned me her 17-ft aluminum Smoker craft.  It must have weighed over a hundred pounds and had about a one inch keel.  It was the boat I used for the first couple of years I was in the club.  I took it everywhere.  The first trip was a week on Caddo lake (that is a camp fire tale in itself).  I did day trips, clean-ups, and Mary Zaborowski and I took it down the Neches dragging it over logs and up a 6-ft bank to camp.  Because of the keel it was hard to maneuver and I kept getting swept under limbs and into rocks.  One time I even had it loaded on top of the truck and backed into a tree - that is why I named it Tree Climber.  It was so heavy and cumbersome that I was always doing sweep on trips and had to have help loading it.  Every year I would call the owner and ask if she wanted it back, and she would reply that her garage had burned down and that she didn't really have a place to store it.  About 10 years ago I called her number and discovered it had been disconnected, so Tree Climber stayed outside in my yard, neglected and alone, until I decided to put a mannequin in it to celebrate different occasions.  Thus was born Hal I Day Man o' Kin.

    
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the earth is my mother
the sky is my father
the animals are my brothers
the canoe lets me get closer to them  
Paul