Camping

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Back in the late 1970's through the middle 1980's the Porter Family spent a week or two and sometimes more each year camping on Blewett Falls Lake, Pee Dee River, Anson County, North Carolina.  I have referenced those camping adventurers throughout this website and have linked a few pictures and will place most of the pixs on this page.  Below pix showing where Porter's Point is located on Blewett Falls Lake.  It was the locals that named the point Porter's Point because we spent so much time there over the years.

 

The closest boat landing to Porter's Point was about 800 yards northwest of the point and was a place where a lot of unruly rum heads would hang out especially on the weekends.  It was not uncommon for fights to break out and a vehicle left overnight was an easy mark and fair game for the thieves that made their rounds to such places.  However, the adjacent land owner Mr. Jerry Ingram was kind enough to let us access Porter's Point by traveling through and across his locked gated pastures and fields known as Ingram's low ground.  Below is pix of Jerry at our campsite along with Russ Wyatt.  The land mentioned above has been in the Ingram family for many generations.  It always amazed me how Jerry could farm his land in a large John Deer enclosed tractor and never got a speck of dirt on his person. 

 

Below is a pix of John Clark and his son.  Clark was a commercial fisherman and I have seen his john boat loaded with large catfish he caught while we were camping.  The below slide was processed July 2, 1979.  I believe that is me,  Bill aka Mickey Porter outside the boat talking to them.

Below is a close-up pix taken of Jim Clark in October 1983:

Not too far from our campsite was a mineral (limestone) water spring on Jerry's property that had some of the best tasting water around.  The spring head ran 24/7 with clear water and had a large diameter concrete pipe and slab of concrete to protect it from filling in from the sloping terrain.  One of these days I plan to get back in there and take a pix of the ole spring.  I harvested many raccoons from a nearby yellow poplar tree that had a large hollow about 30 feet off the ground.  Back then, fur bearers were bringing top dollar for their hides and a large raccoon hide would fetch about 25 dollars.

Also, there is a spot traditionally known as the Indian Execution Rock where about 50 yards due east was the old court house where Wadesboro first got its start and was spelled Wadesborough from the old English spelling.  Inserted a few pixs of the marker:

The bronze marker inlaid into the stone is self explanatory.  In 2012, another marker stone and bronze plate  was added to correct the wrong date of Colonel Thomas Wades death.  Below is a pix of where the old court house would have been:

Below is pix of a 1964 Chevrolet Biscayne that I pulled the 16' John Boat which we used to haul our camping equipment in prior to getting an ole 1971 Ford Country Squire Panel Station Wagon and later a 1973 GMC truck. Put many miles on the ole 64 Chevy before retiring it...Glad it can't talk too!  Go ahead and grin on that one.

Inserted pixs of our camp site back then.  We used a large Hillary model tent, screened sitting/eating area when needed, sleeping bags, Porta potty, 50-flush model with chemicals, portable shower and about anything you needed to live comfortable on the river bank.  Also had a small chain saw to help with the firewood along with the manual stuff like ax and a couple different buck saws.

Imagine fitting all the above stuff in the boat before the station wagon and truck were obtained.  We did not want for anything in the way of preparing our meals, snacks, etc.  The large rock fire pit can be seen in the left portion of the pix also.  Each morning, my bride would hang out the sleeping bags to air dry, weather permitting of course since the humidity would normally be fairly high. 

There were many shelves fashioned from 4x6 pieces of bridge timber that we found floating in the river and adapted them between the trees near the campsite.  When Carolina Power and Light Company was later purchased by Progress Energy, Carolinas, Inc., they removed all the ole camping structures from their water line right of way and camping was prohibited, however I believe they do allow camping again by permit only....don't know for sure since this is all hear say!

We cooked over the open fire pit in the early spring when the weather was cool using cast iron cookware but later on during July and August used the liquid Coleman and/or white gas to fuel the Coleman stove as seen above in the pix.  We had cookware for each type of cooking.

Pix of open fire pit before we made a much larger fire pit and lined it with much larger stones.  There is nothing to compare with food prepared over an open fire whereby the hickory and oak wood seems to put additional flavors into what you are cooking.  Also, the crackling and popping sounds given off from Eastern Red Cedar wood burning and the small showers of sparks from the embers as they are burning is a sight to behold! 

A closer view of the Coleman cook stove with some bacon sizzling on the cast iron griddle.

My bride aka Joyce doing a little pre-scrubbing in river water before the final cleaning.  This pix was taken July 1979.

My bride doing some early morning cooking on the Coleman liquid gas stove July 1978.

Pix of my bride aka Joyce, Billy, Lisa and Laura enjoying some pancakes, eggs and bacon at the edge of the river.  Even in river clothes my bride was a "knock out"...grin if you must.  I

Pix taken in 1980 and the river water level is down about 6 feet or more from a normal water level.  The large island in the back ground is Big Water Island and the Blewett Falls dam is about half a mile or more beyond the large island.

Another view from the shadows looking toward Big Water Island.

One of our regular daily visitors while camping was my bride's Dad, Henry Adcock who kept us well supplied with fresh fish along with fresh vegetables from his garden during the summer months.  Inserted a few pixs of him cat fishing and crappy fishing:

Above pix taken in 1977 displaying some beautiful fall colors at Smith's Creek.

Henry along with his brother James were one of the originators of the octopus style of drifting for crappies with cane poles.  Henry did not use a trolling motor but simply kept the boat moving along with a single paddle just enough to keep a very small wake behind the floating florescent orange and red corks.  He is retrieving a small crappy in this pix.  Also, you can see some floating white milk jugs in the back ground to the right of the pix of which I apparently was "jug fishing" fishing for catfish.  Henry fished and hunted without the benefits of technology and was extremely successful!  I can only remember one time that I personally out fished him and that was night fishing for Crappie on a dark moonless still wind night and had a couple lanterns secured to the side of the boat about 4 feet high and using a 12VDC Styrofoam enclosed water proof light bulb and fishing straight below the light source, whereas Henry brought his long crappie poles and could not get close enough to the light source.  This type of "night fishing" has the shad bait fish circling the boat in a counter clockwise pattern most of the time and draws all species of fish to the light and food source.  The Crappies were hitting the live minnows at about 8 to 12 feet depth.  Back then, there was no limit on the number of Crappie caught but there is now a daily creel limit now of 20 on Blewett Falls Lake due to the fishing pressure.

In this pix, Henry is cat fishing up around the Grassy Islands about six miles from our campsite.  Notice he has his left thumb on the line feeling for a catfish to take the bait.  This is one of my favorite pixs of a great Christian, friend and father-in-law now deceased.  

Pix of our youngest daughter Lisa with a bass she has just caught September 1978.

Catfish harvested from my split white oak basket in September 1978.  A thief apparently saw me fishing my basket and relieved me of it too.  I didn't fish the basket  but a few weeks before it "disappeared."

Kids having a good time.

Someone enjoying a sailboat and the weather was beautiful for it as evidenced by this pix.

Another pix showing the serene and tranquil beauty of Porter's Point.  The last time I walked to the point from Jerry's pasture, the place looked about the same minus the camping shelving structures and as beautiful as ever.

Pix of our son Bill, Jr. fly fishing for sunfish.  The water level is very high in this pix.  Bill is 44 years old now and has a couple boys that love the outdoors as much as their Dad and Grand Dad does.

I hope you have enjoyed the pixs posted as it brings back many wonderful memories of some of the good times our family shared while camping at Porter's Point.

Our family has been blessed to have the opportunity to enjoy some of the simple pleasures that God has to offer us.   Two of the Greatest Ships that ever sailed, Friendship and Fellowship whether sailing with family, friends or strangers.

Bill aka Mickey Porter 06-27-12.

Below is a pix of Blewett Falls Lake pulled way down, anywhere between 8 to 12 feet below the normal level of the lake.  I believe they were working on the dam at this time.  You could also see the tops of trees out of the water a foot or more that were at least 12 inches in diameter and located off the rocky point to the right of this pix out of view.  You can see the rocky point in the above pix.  One of the tree tops had a large piece of propeller still imbedded into it.  Those tree tops were hard as concrete after all the decades of being submerged (without much oxygen).  Normally those tree tops would normally be at least 8 feet below the normal level of the lake.  Picture taken in August 1981 or maybe July since the slides were developed in August 1981:

Web published above pix by Bill aka Mickey Porter on 06-06-15.

Billy Porter fly fishing in August 1981 when the water level was very low as in the pix above.

Click on below thumbnail pixs for a larger screen view that were taken between 1978 and August 1982:

PORTER'S POINT 09-14-03

Since those camping years of the late 1970s and 1980s, Carolina Power and Light Company was purchased by Progress Energy and recently purchased by Duke Power.  As soon as Progress Energy acquired CP&L, they immediately went around the perimeter of Blewett Falls Lake and removed any permanent structure on their right of way which included any type of shelving between trees and any make shift shack, etc.  Below are a few pixs I took back on 09-14-03, whereas the water level was several feet below normal and apparently working on the dam.  Click on thumbnails for a larger screen view:

 

The access road to the ole boating landing was closed sometime around 2012 and to my understanding purchased by the Crown Point development owners to keep unruly people out of the area.  Times has really changed since our camping days on Blewett Falls Lake; our children now have kids of their own older than they were in the above pixs and time is not waiting on any of us. 

I certainly feel fortunate and blessed to have the opportunity to enjoy part of what God has to offer us and have made many friends along the way.  There is awesome beauty all around us if we just take the time to really look and enjoy!

"Two of the Greatest Ships that ever sailed: Friendship and Fellowship."

Web published by Bill aka Mickey Porter with updated pixs on 04-12-15, 06-06-15, 06-09-15, 06-15-15 and 09-11-15.

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