Thursday, July 8, 2010

Scow trip, July 7, 2010.





The scow was pulled out of the river at Newcastle Beach in Drumheller late in the afternoon. It is now in storage on a farm in Consort, Alberta with plans to try again next year. Next year we will use larger crews at all times- this way we can get the scow off rocks when it is stuck on one. We will also explore some system (inflatable?) to lift the scow off rocks. Thin steel on the bottom will no doubt help slide over protruding rocks. Also considering bringing a support boat with a powerful motor for towing us off rocks when needed, taking crews off of the scow to field areas where the scow cannot stop, and scouting in advance for rocks, areas to stop scow, etc. Of historical interest is that where the scow beached is the site of the Charles H. Sternberg (and sons Charles M. and Levi) fieldcamp of 1912.

Philip J. Currie and Eva Koppelhus submitted this paragraph about their trip down the river today:

The final day of the incredible voyage began as the scow was pushed off its muddy dock at 7:15 AM. As on the previous day, Al Rasmuson and Bill Spencer tended the front tiller, while Tom and Phil took care of the back end. This was probably the most stunning day visually, as kilometers of badlands slipped by. Everyone wanted to stop and look for fossils, but we all knew we had a deadline to dock in Drumheller. Most of the day passed uneventfully, but the wind became stronger by afternoon. It pushed the scow into the rocky left bank as we passed through some otherwise moderate rapids upstream of Nacmine. Undamaged, the vessel twisted 360 degrees through the fast waters, and continued downstream. Half an hour later, however, it ground to a stop on another gravel bar. Even with the water levels so high on the river, it took a little time to push it back into the deeper waters downstream. Some of the staff of the Tyrrell Museum came down to cheer us on as we passed the vicinity of the museum, and again as we passed the train tressle near the west end of Drumheller. The trip was almost over, and in spite of fighting the wind as it pushed the scow back and forth across the channel, it had been a fairly easy day. As we approached Newcastle Beach, Phil and Eva remembered the rapids at the foot of 12 Street, close to their former home in Drumheller. Everyone was up for one last fight to get through, but we found the channel by the right bank and slipped through without any problems. As planned, the scow pulled into shore at 3:45, some thirty kilometers after departing the Morrin Bridge campground. There were many hands to assist us to unpack; and a truck with a crane from Dan's Oilfield Services was there to lift the scow out of the water. Lawrence Dohy (DRI) drove Al and Bill back to Calgary, while Tom and Tess dropped Eva and Phil off at their field camp in Dry Island Buffalo Jump Provincial Park. It had been an amazing journey, and the crew was unanimous in their determination to do it again next year at a more leisurely pace!
The pictures today were provided by Phil and Eva.

12 comments:

  1. Darren, I'm so sorry to hear about your medical issue. Please have a speedy recovery. Get well!

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  2. Disappointed for you and the crew, but kudos on all your hard work. Give it another go next year and it's sure to pay off.

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  3. Dear Darren,

    So sorry to hear that the voyage has had to be postponed for twelve months, congratulations to you and your team for getting as far as you did and our very best wishes to you for a speedy recovery.
    Regards,
    Everyone at Everything Dinosaur (UK)

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  4. Wishing everyone the best of luck next year and a speedy recovery for Darren this year. We'll be following along vicariously next year from Richmond, BC.

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  5. Good luck to you last year. So sorry to hear that you were not able to complete your voyage. I'll be checking and watching here in
    Red Deer.

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  6. Sorry about what happened. But you did a good job. Keep it up. I'm sure you'll get it next year.

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  7. Hey - what an experience! With all the issues you had - imagine what it would have been like decades ago! I'm glad I finally got to catch up on your trip and will be watching the blog daily next year! Hope your health is O.K. Darren!

    Monica

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  8. Sorry for that. don't disappoint keep trying. you may complete your task.

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  9. Anyway I think it was a great trip with a lot of adventures but next year it should be much more interesting.

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