A day’s (mis)adventure at Amy’s

How many bees does it take to stop two kayakers from enjoying a day on the water?

We often hear from our members that they enjoyed a particular hike or paddle on our land. David Oakley’s and Dianna Masto’s day of mishaps at Amy’s Park is a perfect demonstration of the real devotion of our members to visiting our preserves and en- joying the great outdoors.

According to David, it was a perfect August morning for their visit to Amy’s. There were no threatening clouds, no emergency emails from his office. Just a perfect day.

After an unsuccessful first attempt to carry their two kayaks inside their Toyota High- lander, they switched tactics and tied them to the roof. With the last knot pulled tight, they set out from Arcady to Bolton.

It must be the curse of Tongue Mountain. Three times the knots loosened. Each time the resulting sound of kayaks rearranging themselves compelled David to stop the car. David reported that he was quite sure, each time, that he had solved the problem. Dianna remained less sure.

After passing it only once, David found the pull-off and access trail to Amy’s boat launch off of Trout Falls Road. Removing the kayaks from the car roof, they proceed- ed down the slope to the water, one kayak at a time. During the second trip, David disturbed a bee nest and an angry swarm chased him and Dianna back up the slope. David suffered four stings; Dianna, none.

After giving the bees time to return to their home, the adventurers carefully made their way down to launch their kayaks and enjoy a blissful 45 minutes of paddling around the park’s lower pond.

They disembarked carefully, paying special attention to try to avoid the area of the previous bee attack. Unfortunately, either a nearby second nest or the same first nest was once again annoyed by these human intruders and a repeat performance ensued. Four stings to David; Dianna, none.

Without giving the swarm time for a third attack, the kayaks were pulled quickly up to the car. But, this time, David was NOT going to repeat the mistake of two kayaks on the roof. He tied one kayak to the roof and put the second inside, laying on the folded seats beside him and Dianna, who

sat behind him. Not far down the road David glanced at the windshield on the passenger’s side and saw a new, 12-inch star-like form on the glass, expanding from the kayak’s bow.

Luckily, the remainder of the return trip was unevenful, and after they had time to relax and refuel with lunch, David and Dianne decided that Amy’s was worth the visit— and $400 windshield repair—despite all.

So, the answer to our question? Not even two swarms and eight bee stings can stop two kayakers from enjoying a paddle at Amy’s Park.