Roosting in the rain


STANDING AROUND in the rain eating out of a pot. Been here before, will be again.

An all-day rain started before dawn, so I’m roosting here on the Potomac at Pohick Bay for a second night. All my gear is dry. The way to get it wet would be to break it down and load it up. If there was a week of rain coming, no choice, but the forecast is for sun tomorrow. Will sit tight until then.


My camp, in a pleasant little grove of beech, oak and pine.

Tuesday I was asleep on the couch at 9, up at 1, out the door by 2. I awoke the bride by walking around in my boots. Clomping around, some may allege. It nullified the point of having slept on the couch.

Got on the highway, pointed the iron piggy at the Belt of Orion and gave her a twist. Three hours later I made the turn south and saw Venus bright in the east over Manhattan. She hung over my left shoulder all the way south through New Jersey. It started to get light around the last fuel stop before Delaware. Piggy stopped for gas, I stopped for orange juice.

I set up my camp, made pasta for lunch, napped for 2 hours. That was just to get in shape for sleeping 8 to 8 overnight. I must have really been zonked. It’s good sleeping woods here, a booze-free park. People who want to hoot & holler all night go somewhere else. Actually, in December I imagine they stay home. The park is pretty empty even of quiet people.

Saw the clouds moving in last evening, dimming out a waxing crescent moon. Heard a fox running around in the dark doing that bird-like bark they do when agitated, AWKKK! AWKKK! It was off to the south and close, then circling around to the east and more distant. A while later what sounded like at least three fairly big animals came running through the dry leaf cover. I assumed deer but when one of them stopped and looked at my headlamp I saw it had eyes in the front. Dogs? Dunno. Wouldn’t dogs be barking? Anyway, it didn’t bother me and I didn’t bother it.

Nothing comes too close in the woods, four-legged or two. And no wonder. Look at that stalwart guardian in forward posture. Behold the mighty piggy, which is of iron.

Tony DePaul, December 17, 2015, Pohick Bay, Virginia, USA


About Tony

The occasional scribblings of Tony DePaul, 63, father, grandfather, husband, freelance writer in many forms, ex-journalist, long-distance motorcycle rider, motorcycle wrecker, motorcycle rebuilder, collector of surgical hardware, blue routes wanderer, outdoorsman, topo map bushwhacker, handy with a wrench, hammer, chainsaw, rifle, former photographer, printer, logger, truck driver, truck mechanic, jet fueler… blah blah...
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4 Responses to Roosting in the rain

  1. William Stenger says:

    Nice write-up, glad the December hasn’t been too harsh!

    • Tony says:

      It got down to about 26 last night, but it’s a toasty 75 in the sleeping bag.

      • William Stenger says:

        Which way you headed from here? If I had caught your notice earlier I would have suggested meeting for lunch or a cup of coffee. I’m out of school after Wednesday. By the way, 26 is cold for camping, but it sounds like you ave a good sleeping bag. Which park did you stay at?

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