The weather was not too favorable yesterday for Joe with drizzle and rain constant through the day. The night before (Thursday), there was flash flood warnings for the area where he camped last night (Friday). It was a real good decision to pull off when he did on Thursday because the four inches of rain that rained in an hour would have been miserable in his tent. Despite this, he was able to paddle 31 miles, ending up camping near Fort Yates.
(Sunrise at Ft. Rice campsite)
Fort Yates is where Sitting Bull, the famous Sioux leader, was buried. However, it is rumored that in 1953, his body was exhumed and transported near Mobridge, South Dakota. As for South Dakota, Joe will be crossing the border today and start the next leg in his third state of the trip.
Sitting Bull's original burial site at Fort Yates, ND
As for his day of paddling, he said the cooler weather was actually welcome because the heat and neoprene really don’t mesh too well. The water was calmer and there were no thunderstorms that came through. On the water, he ran into two brothers, Ben and Rick Nelson, who were very kind to him. The day before he ran into them and they gave him two ice cold coca-colas. This day (Friday), he ended up paddling by their campsite at Beaver Creek Bay. They greeted him and offered him a great ham sandwich and coffee, much welcome at that point in the day.
(Rick and Ben Nelson, true paddling friends)
As for the food, that leads me to Joe’s nutrition. His meals thus far have been pretty consistent. His breakfast consists of oatmeal and coffee (a must for him). During the day, he seems to be cruising through beef jerky; I believe he told me a pound a day. He is burning a ton of calories paddling, so he needs to be taking in so many as to not lose too much weight. According to one website, in kayaking whitewater (which Joe is not doing, a very loose correlation, but kayaking nonetheless) a person Joe’s size would burn 400 calories per hour. Paddling his 10 hours a day sometimes, that would equal out to 4000 calories burned through exercise a day! Currently, he has lost 15 lbs since Virginia, which is pretty much expected. He also snacks on plenty of protein bars and other treats during the day. His dinners have been consisting of an appetizing combo of Stovetop stuffing mixed with a half block of cheese and a can of tuna….mmmm! After doing the math, the total calories for dinner alone is 1710 calories with 88 grams of protein. That is almost the recommended daily value for a whole day for a normal person. However, with being so active, that serving size does not seem too big.
(The toad was even wet and trying to bury itself under some cement)
His goal for all of Lake Oahe is 30 miles a day. So, whatever is a good campsite 30 miles south of Fort Yates will probably be his next camp. He’s hoping to get close enough to civilization tonight though so he can see some fireworks. What a great Fourth of July being on the greatest American waterway system! I hope all of you have a great Fourth of July and look forward to updating you all of Joe’s progress tomorrow.
(Drying out my pirate paddling shirt courtesy of Adam Mueller)