Saturday, July 15, 2006
Good 'ol Days
Now that we are in the middle of the busy season things have become hectic. People are getting cranky, populations of people and bears are on the rise, and Rangers tolerance of stupidity lowers. It seems like only yesterday I arrived and I realize that soon I will have to leave this great place. For me I am looking at returning to school for one last semester before graduating. But I remember that when I first arrived at Brooks camp one among us decided to forego his graduation walk to help us travels the path of Ranger. In honor of the walk that he missed we, his proud fellow (male) rangers, decided that he should go through Katmai's illustrious initiation ceremony. However to be initiated by the Katmai Polar Bear Swim you cannot travel that road alone so several of us volunteered to help him celebrate his achievement that he left behind. Tim "Tickles" Chu was accompanied by Matt King, Pete Hamel, Pete Bruno, Greg Fahl, and Shane Harrington. To set the scene: It was a warm 43 degrees outside with a 3-5 mph wind and the water was a balmy 32 degrees. Oddly enough on this nice May afternoon we were not that cold...until we ran into Naknek lake. Due to inappropriateness I cannot show some of the funny photos which contain my roommate trying unsuccessfully to hold up his thermal pants. We ran out about 350 yards to get waist deep so we could dive into the water. By the time we dove in head first our feet were numb. Once we reached the beach we could not feel our feet. Several of us were sweating not from exertion, but from being hot since we had gotten so cold. Luckily we only had mild cases of hypothermia. :) Just imagine we were freezing while most of you were sweating outside.