Swimming Holes

greenspun.com : LUSENET : A Country Singletree : One Thread

What was (is) your favorite swimming hole? Why? Who did you share it with? Can you still get there? Here's mine: The Chippewa River, dirt road off of M66 north of Barryton, Michigan at the bridge (recently washed out btw). In the Spring (1950's) us girl cousins let the boy cousins jump in first and splash around a lot. This got rid of the blood suckers and stirred it up enough so the bottom was sandy again. Spring fed and COLD. Sometimes we went to High Banks instead, out in the woods, same river. It was near where Grandpa lost a horse named Dan when he got caught in a "bog". Dan died trying to get out. Grandpa buried him near the bank. The low spot where that horse was buried 70 odd years ago is still there. If you knew where to look you could find bottles of beer and pop (pop for the kids to keep it secret, beer for Grandpa) buried in the springs feeding the river. Turtles climbed the sandy banks to lay their eggs. So sad when we ran down the banks in the Springtime and ended up squishing turtle eggs unawares. Kinda gross too. All private land now. Can't go back there again--fences in the woods. It was private in the 50's too, but who cared then? Everybody knew everybody else, and there was so much empty land it didn't much matter who used what for why. It was unimportant if children played in the woods. We were welcome, unnoticed and took it for granted. Not anymore. BUT, I have the memories. No one can take that away.

-- Susan in Northern Lower Penn Michigan (cobwoman@yahoo.com), April 07, 2002


The Atlantic ocean?! I hate swimming in lakes and ponds unless I'm in really deep water. Mucky bottoms, fish nibbling on your toes, and the leeches, eeeeewwwwwww!!!! The weeds are pretty bad too, especially when they get around your legs. Eeeewwww, ish ish!! Oh yea and the camp experiences with the Gars in the lake, fresh water sharks. I think Michigan is the only state that has those monsters. I love to swim, but I grew up swimming in the ocean. The Long Island Sound to be exact, off of Connecticut.

I think the exception is if your go up to the Boundary Waters (a beautiful, pristeen, wilderness in northern MN) It is so clean you can drink the water and the bottoms are usually hard/sandy, and you can see everything under you.


-- Susan the other (nanaboo@paulbunyan.net), April 07, 2002.

The Elk River. Our swimmin' hole has been passed down for six generations and we still have to scat when the local church is doing those "dunk and scrubs with the salvation rinse" in spring and summer :>)

-- Jay Blair in N. AL (jayblair678@yahoo.com), April 07, 2002.

I grew up in Ohio, and we had gars there too. Could give a kid nightmares!! Jill

-- Jill (lance1_86404@yahoo.com), April 08, 2002.

What on earth is a Gar? Never heard of them. Also, where we swam in the Chippewa we didn't have weeds, just old trees and snags. The blood suckers weren't a problem once the boy kids stirred 'em out. The bottom of the river was sand. Clean water as it was spring fed. Clear all around us. I tried a sea once (Atlantic). That was enough. Salt, jellyfish, sharks. Warm and smelly. No thanks.

-- Susan in Northern Lower Penn Michigan (cobwoman@yahoo.com), April 08, 2002.

Susan, You have lived in Michigan all your life and don't know what a Gar is? Hmmmmm! How about a fresh water shark or barracuda. It is an ugly long nosed fish not unlike a Muskie with a gator type nose and really mean teeth. They have been known to attack and take toes off. Snappers can be just as bad.

-- Susan the other one (nanaboo@paulbunyan.net), April 08, 2002.

Hi Susan in MN, Guess the waterways that we knew were too shallow and narrow to have anything large enough to bite hard. I suspect we made so much noise that we scared everything away anyway. Nope, never heard of a Gar. Nibbles from minnows was fun and tickely. Snappers would have been another story, but we only found painted turtles. Crayfish and fresh water clams, frogs, salamanders, suckers, sunfish and perch. Oh and lots and lots of skeeters and deer flies.

-- Susan in Northern Lower Penn Michigan (cobwoman@yahoo.com), April 08, 2002.

We always went to the "Hole in the Road". The feds condemned and confiscated a lot of farm land (some of ours, too) around us in the early 70's for a huge recreational lake. Did we go to the nice sandy beaches they built? Heck no!! We went a couple miles from home where a road that used to go through to another town now just runs down into the lake. Mud - yep. Gar, we got 'em; snappers too. Don't recall any leeches, except the ones the fellows would get at the bait shop to bait the trot-lines with. Did I mention that we were usually skinny dippping? And the only weeds that I remember were illegal ones?! Ahhh, the good old days!

-- Polly (tigger@moultrie.com), April 08, 2002.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ