Sunday, March 15, 2009

Me and my Big Ideas

Me and My big ideas! On this the last day of my vacation I had to go get more free gas. So I get the gas and decide that this will be my last chance to get some Mecca hotdogs. While waiting on my hotdogs I decide to go up to the Blair Mountain firetower. My truck made it up the hill without too much problem and I was glad because there was nowhere to turn around and I sure didn't want to back down the mountain on a barely passable road in the ice and snow on top of very lose dirt with plenty of ditches to slide into.

I found the turnoff to the firetower and it was too steep to take my truck up so I parked. I grabbed my video camera and started walking. Walking very slowly because I am not supposed to go hiking up mountain trails with my heart. It was only about 100 yards and it was not very steep. I had to take breaks every 20 feet or so, but I made it to where the firetower used to be. I had been told it was gone a couple of years ago but I still wanted to see for myself. The cabins had been razed and there was no sign of the firetower. Even the picnic tables were gone from the picnic area as was the sign marking the area as one of historical significance. (The Battle of Blair Mountain was fought here.)

If I could have gone to the top of the firetower I could have videotaped the damage done by mountain top mining in the area. Which is why the tower was taken down by the way. When they take out the top of the mountain they are very careful to make sure everything looks as normal as possible from the road. Actually they take the whole mountain - not just the top. I have videotape from the late nineties from the firetower. I took it when I was looking for a comet ( I think it was Kouhoutek, but I'm not sure). I wanted to compare the two videos. I could see some damage but it was nothing outrageous. I am sure that it would have been another world if the firetower had been there.

I was up there a couple of hours enjoying the scenery and remembering good times that I had there in the past. The last time I was up there they found a woman who had been murdered a few days before. Her body was probably there when I was there. That is why I never went back. Also my health made it impossible for a couple of years too. I am proud of myself even though I had to take frequent breaks to walk to the top of the mountain. It makes me proud of myself that I even did it!

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