Sunday, April 26, 2009

Alligator Creek

Aimee, Pete Brown, Mike and I paddled Alligator Creek today in search of the waterway's namesake. I was so stoked about seeing that one on Thursday that I wanted to see some more and Mike knew where to look. We weren't disappointed. The weather was beautiful, maybe even a little hot. When we launched from Belville Park there was no wind and the Brunswick River looked like glass. We weren't 10 minutes up the creek when a medium sized gator slid off the bank ahead of me and cruised out into the water, eyeing us for a minute before submerging. We continued on under the roadway and into the "lake" in the middle of the island, where we split up to search different banks. Aimee and I were the lucky ones, spotting a really big guy pulled up onto the bank up to his hind legs just a split second before he spun around and went under. I think he was even bigger than the one I saw on Thursday. He looked long and fat and prehistoric. At the other end of the lake there is a small creek that dumps into the Cape Fear just north of town. You can only get through on a full tide, which we had, so we wound our way through there at a very cautious pace. I found a dead turtle. We poked into the horseshoe and up creek off it, then lunched on a small bit of high ground on Eagle's Island. Then up to the N end of Alligator Creek and back through, where we ran into several more gators and a couple of osprey in the nest. We also saw an anhinga, unusual here, and tons of red-winged blackbirds. The trip back across the Brunswick River was a little breezy, but no big deal. Pretty day on the water again. Now to cleaning and bill paying. Cheers.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

White Lake Sprint Triathlon, 7 Days Out

I rode 47 miles on the bike today! That's the most miles I've ever clocked in a single day. I did about 15 before work on my FX, and then my coworker and friend Kim asked if I wanted to ride out to Snow's Cut on River Rd. after work (about 28 miles round trip). I need the training, and she's done multiple tri's including an Iron distance race, and has been a personal trainer, so I said hell yes. At 5 I grabbed a Giant Defy 2 from the store and we hit the pavement. The ride out was into a reasonably stiff headwind, which made for a tailwind on the return trip. I hung with her for the first 2/3 of the ride, but she was waiting for me at lights by the end. I probably bit off a little more than I could chew, but that's OK cause I got a good ride in. At one point we were going 25/26 mph and it was awesome. I was absolutely starving by the end of it, but I still had to switch bikes back at the store and then pedal home, another 4 miles. I got some killer cramps about a mile from home and had to stop and stretch/rest. Then I devoured a meal of spicy spaghetti w/ spicy sausage meatballs, Caesar salad, and bread.

Lessons learned:
1. I need to work on my endurance and speed.
2. I need to make sure I take enough water and nutrition with me all the time, so that if my body is craving calories and hydration, I can take care of it.
3. Invest in a good pair of bike shorts. Tonight I wore tri shorts, which have less padding, and it felt like it.

Tomorrow Aimee and I will be joining Mike for a paddle up Alligator Creek on Eagle's Island in hopes of recreating Thursday's encounter for Aimee. Then I'm going to cook my baby dinner. Have a good Sunday. Cheers.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Critical Mass

An Old CM Flyer

I participated in my second Critical Mass ride tonight. For those who don't know, Critical Mass is an international bicycle awareness campaign with local rides in hundreds of cities around the states and the world. Rides occur on the last Friday of every month. There is no central leadership; riders gather at an established spot, start at the given time (usually about 6 pm), and monopolize one lane of the road. In Wilmington they meet at 6 under the clock tower at my alma mater, UNCW. Tonight we turned left out of the uni up to Oleander, Oleander to Wooster, Wooster to 5th to Market (at which point I break off since I live a few blocks from there). This is different than last time I rode it, but the idea is to ride down major thoroughfares on a Friday night in rush hour traffic for maximum effect. Most people smile and wave, some people stare, and every now and then I guess one or two drivers will get upset. Tonight there were no negative incidents. It's surreal to ride down College, Market, or Oleander in jammed traffic on a bike with 50 other people and feel totally comfortable. Dig around on the net or check out your local bike shop or ask cycling friends if there's one near you. It's a cool experience. Cheers.

In Good Company, photo by Garrett Grimsley

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Mill Creek, Varnamtown

My good friend Lydia, host of the party I attended last weekend, is starting a new job this spring down at Holden Beach renting various beach gear like surfboards, bikes, and kayaks and running tours by bike and kayak. She's doing some reconnaissance for tours, so today Mike and I drove down to help her explore a possible tour location in the area. We launched from a boat ramp in Varnamtown, which I had never heard of until today and paddled across the Lockwood's Folly River into a marsh creek called Mill Creek. There was absolutely no wind when we were launching, and I was being eaten alive by no-see-ums. There was also a haze of smoke from the fires that are burning down in Myrtle Beach, and the air smelled of smoke. The bugs let up a little when we hit the water, but shortly a little breeze picked up and that was the end of the bug problem. At first I was kind of non-plussed on the paddle, but figured it couldn't go wrong since Mike and Lydia are two of my favorite people. Shortly though, it got interesting as we stroked up the creek against the outgoing tide as the creek meandered through a large marsh. Mike gave us a lecture, at Lydia's prompting, about the plant life. The standard local marsh grass is spartina alternaflora, which is very familiar from our days guiding at SMKC in WB (also known as marsh cordgrass). As we moved further into the marsh, however, the species changed to black needle rush. I've seen this on Bradley Creek at WB. It's interesting to see the change from all cordgrass to a border zone of both grasses to all needle rush. There were plenty of marsh periwinkle's along the way. The highlight of the paddle, by far, was having my first alligator experience by kayak, and it was a doozy. Mike and Lydia stopped for a quick restroom break and to scout a lunch spot, which wasn't very good. From his standing vantage, Mike suggested that there might be a better spot a little further along, so I decided to paddle ahead and check it. I got about 50 yards up when I saw a mud bank where all of the grass was flattened down, as though a gator had been sunning there. I was aware of the possibility of seeing gators from convo with Mike, so I noted it but kept paddling. All of a sudden I was aware of fast movement ahead of me, and when I looked, there was a HUGE alligator in mid-air, lauching from the bank into the water. He didn't slide in; he jumped. All 8-10 feet of him sailed through the air and splashed loudly down into the muddy creek, just 20' off my bow. It happened so fast that I'm not positive of his length, except that he looked very long. What I am positive of is that he was very big, and that his girth was more impressive than his length. There is no way I could have wrapped my arms around his middle. I was thrilled and shocked and scared, all at the same time. It was amazing. I paddled backwards because I didn't want to test or follow him by myself. I kept going, in reverse, as fast as I could, all the way back to Mike and Lydia and started excitedly yelling at them what I had just seen. We paddled further along until the marsh became forest and the water looked more like blackwater than marsh creek, both to try to find the gator and for a better lunch spot. We found neither, and ended up eating in our boats just across from the gator launch pad. The entire way back, and still some 7 hours later, I glowed about how awesome it was. In the bird category we saw great blue heron, great egret, spotted sandpiper, red-breasted merganser, green heron, laughing gull, common tern, red-tailed hawk, osprey, and wood duck. On the way back I started feeling the effects of forgetting sunscreen and wearing short sleeves, which I remedied by rubbing the cool black marsh mud onto my forearms, which worked quite well. It was a nice trip. I can't tell on Google Earth how far into the forest we got, but I'd estimate the trip at 8 or 9 miles total, out and back. On the way home I got a Nehi grape soda in a glass bottle. It was a good day. Get your ass outside and do something fun! Cheers.

Sunday, April 19, 2009


I spent this weekend with about 25 of my favorite people eatin' pork and paddling in BFE. This was the 3rd iteration of the party, which has previously consisted of a Saturday night oyster roast and potluck dinner at Scott and Lydia's homestead, camping out on their property, and a blackwater paddle on Sunday. These are group photos from each:

The 1st Annual BFE Oyster Roast and South River Paddle

BFE 1.5 Oyster Roast and Lumber River Paddle

BFE 2 Pig Pickin' and South/Black River Paddle

This time a pig was roasted instead of oysters. We had a perfect night for an outdoor party and camping. Temps in the mid 50's. In addition to the pig, we had excellent pickled shrimp, my jalapeno cheesy cornbread muffins, various sides and salads, and a selection of deserts. It was quite a meal. There were some new faces, and some old ones, and we all had drinks and talked story around the bonfire. The highlight was the Naked Virgin Foot Race, which was hilarious but not photo apropos. Aimee and I camped on the edge of Scott's long-leaf pine forest without the rain-fly on the tent and both slept wonderfully. We woke to the rooster's crow and a very persistent whip-poor-will. Scott worked his magic in the kitchen again with made-from-scratch biscuits and homemade sausage, eggs fresh out of the coop in the backyard, a big ol' tub of grits, homemade jams and apple butter, coffee, and macerated strawberries (Lydia deserves some credit for manning the grits). After breakfast we packed everything up and drove to the launch some 45 minutes away.

The river trip:

Another Magic Bus

We paddled section 10 of the South River, which ends on the Black. The put-in is off of Ennis Bridge Rd, and is familiar to me as the take-out from the previous section, which I've paddled twice now. The morning started off a little cool, but comfortable, and warmed up as the day wore on. Water levels were pretty high at 7.5', and this was manifest in the fairly swift current and the swollen look of the river. We were 16 folks on the water, which is a pretty big group, but we managed to hang together fairly well. About halfway in we found a little beach and took a break for lunch. At the end of the South River, the river braided out into swamp and was hard to follow, but we worked our way through and found the Black for the last few miles. All said we were about 5 hours gone and 13.4 miles covered. It's a lovely paddle through cypress forest with high banked and swamp sections, very green and pretty. The highlight for me was a barred owl that Brooke and I saw perched on a branch about 10' off the water. He wasn't the least bothered by our watching him from pretty close range. After snapping some pictures we just sat there staring at each other for several minutes. It was really amazing.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Shaken Creek

The Geezer and I paddled down Shaken Creek today. We had plans to launch from the WB drawbridge and head N as far as the F8 bridge and then explore marsh creeks on the way back, but it was pretty blustery and the N wind chilled things down considerably. Given those conditions, it made more sense to paddle some blackwater instead, and Geez knows plenty of good ones. Shaken Creek was his suggestion, so we drove out of town and got to the launch at Old Maple Hill Rd just of NC Hwy 53 in Burgaw. It's a smallish creek bordering Holly Shelter Game Land, averaging about 15' wide (my guess), winding through cypress and pine woods until it fetters out into swamp. Due to recent rain, levels were up and we were able to get pretty far back in there. The only sign of humanity once you get away from the launch is the occasional old catfish line hanging on branches into the dark red water. Most of the way the banks are pretty high, which was wonderful help shielding us from the wind, and there are lots of pretty little mossy/grassy spots that make for good lunch stops. This is a perfect time of year for this sort of paddle because everything looks so fresh and green, but without being overgrown and thick, and the bugs and snakes probably get pretty thick back there in the summer. We saw two deer, a dead wild turkey, a couple of broadwinged hawks, and several prothonotary warblers (pictured above courtesy of the Smithsonian). There was a pretty good current flowing (we paddled upstream and then floated it back down), which given the smallish width of the creek and plenty of cypress knees for downed limbs and trees to snag, created a couple of spots that required some work to get through. It would be advisable to carry a small saw and some line to clear the worst of it. All said, great paddle.

After that I went to the Y to swim, my first time in a pool in a long time. The tri that I'm doing in less than 3 weeks begins with a 750 meter swim, which is over twice what I thought it would be when I volunteered to do this thing. It went pretty well, and I think I swam about 20 laps or so, which is 500 meters. Right now I have to stop and take short breaks on the walls at the end of every few laps. Hopefully I can build up my endurance to swim longer without needing the breaks. We'll see.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Tally Photos

Here are the more interesting of the photos I took in the Panhandle:

Swamp Walk in Leon Sinks area of Apalachicola National Forest

Fence Lizard in the ANF

ANF Trail

Luke Smith, Wakulla Springs Park Ranger

Wakulla River

Wakulla is pronounced "wuh-KUH-luh," but Luke pronounced it "waw-KUL-luh." He was a great tour guide and had all kinds of funny stories and such. We're back home now and ready to fall back into our routine, which we have realized is one that we really love. I'm definitely going to have to make the most of Wilmington while I'm still here. Looking at another place made us realize how nice this place is and how good we have it.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Worm Gruntin'

Aimee and I had a big day today. We checked out a couple of houses before going to the Farmer's Market in downtown Tally (that's what locals call it) and had an excellent breakfast casserole of potatoes, cheese, and kielbasa (plus dill and onions, we must recreate it). Then we went to Wakulla Springs State Park, which is about 20 minutes S of town. It's a massive freshwater spring, the deepest spring of it's kind in the world. The water was unusually clouded due to recent heavy rains. The spring gushes 400,000 gallons/minute according to our very entertaining tour guide and boat operator, Park Ranger Luke. We saw several manatee, gators, brown water snakes, and Suwanee Cooters (turtles). Among birds, there were common moorhen (formerly Florida gallinule), pied-billed grebe, barn swallow, anhinga, American coot, little blue heron, cormorant, great egret, green heron, yellow-crowned night heron, and great blue heron. We spent a little over an hour at Wakulla Springs, then went to Leon Sinks in the Apalachicola National Forest for a hike of about 5 miles through beautiful mixed pine/deciduous forest in karst country. It was amazing how quickly the forest changed from longleaf pine to magnolia to hardwood and back again. The "sinks" are big depressions or even holes in the ground, some filled with water, created by water eroding the limestone underneath and the ground sort of caving in on itself.

From the sinks we drove down to Sopchoppy for the 9th Annual Sopchoppy Worm Gruntin' Festival and partook in the festivities. There were lots of people milling around, eating food, listening to the live music, and checking out the sellers of crafts and goods. We bought a 5 lb bag of earthworm poo, which is apparently the best fertilizer in the world, we'll see. We got our official festival shirts and sampled some homemade hot pepper jam. The best booth we found, aside from the worm crap, housed a touch-tank filled with marine life. They had several species of sea star and sponges, horseshoe crabs, spider crabs, lighting whelk, channel whelk, banded tulips, the biggest Florida horse conch I've ever seen (estimated at over 100 years old), crowned conch, and sea cucumbers. The festival was a definite highlight of the trip. Worm grunting, holy crap that's authenticity at its finest. For more information on worm gruntin' and the festival, see the link below:

From the Worm Gruntin' Festival we drove down to the Gulf of Mexico and along the coast for a bit to Carrabelle, then back to Panacea and on to Tally. We stopped at one little white-sanded beach and walked a little. It was pretty, but there wasn't anything remotely like a rideable wave, which doesn't bode well for my surf habit. It was full day and we're wiped out. I got lots of photos, but I'll have to load them when we get back to Wilmington tomorrow night or later. Check back soon, pics to come, probably with minutia about the above as it comes back to me.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Tallahasee, the Wilderness Way

Aimee and I are in Tallahassee to see if we want to live here. We've got to choose between here and Eugene, Oregon. We were hoping that Tallahassee would blow us away and make the decision easy, but we're still riding the fence. Almost everyone we meet loves it, so that's a good sign, and there are several other bright points, among them paddling. I stopped into the local paddling shop, The Wilderness Way (, where I spoke to Georgia and Jesse to ply them for information about paddling in the area. I found them both friendly and informative. It looks like there are plenty of spring-fed and blackwater rivers in the region, and the Gulf of Mexico is an easy day trip. The birding should be fantastic. We'll have to get used to paddling with gators, which they reassured me was rather easy. Jesse recommended a Middle Eastern/Mediterranean market-eatery called The International House of Food. After a walk around Lake Ella and an exploratory house-hunting expedition this afternoon we swung by to grab dinner and it was amazing. It's a humble hole in the wall, and the owner/operator Hussein was as friendly as we were advised he would be. I had yellow chicken curry with basmati rice, a salad of diced tomatoes, onions, and cucumbers marinated in oil & vinegar & herbs, and toasted pitas. The chicken just fell apart, the curry was delicious, and the portions were large, all for under $8. What a find!

Tomorrow we're doing more neighborhood exploration, and either a nature walk in the Apalachicola National Forest, a trip to Wakulla Springs, or the Sopchoppy Worm Gruntin' Festival. Choices, choices. Perhaps some combination can be achieved. It would be tough to be anywhere near the worm festival and not get a "unique festival t-shirt." Unique indeed. More to come.

Sunday, April 5, 2009


In my previous post I mentioned that I almost lost my knife today, and that this was something of an odd coincidence. It was given to me by a former girlfriend some 6 or 7 years ago. While I don't know knives very well, I know that this one cost over $100, which makes it plenty nice enough for me. Today I almost lost it while kayaking. It was in my dry bag, which was on the deck of my boat, stuck under, but not attached to, my deck rigging. It was a little choppy for a spell, and a wave washed the bag off my deck, which I didn't immediately notice. Lucky for me, one of my fellow paddlers noticed it and grabbed it and that was that. I was very relieved.

Ok, the coincidence. In late March of 2003 I was fresh out of the Navy and crashing at my folks place between road trips. They live on a "lake," more properly a glorified pond, and there had been considerable recent rain. So much rain, in fact, that the lake had swelled beyond its normal banks and submerged all of the docks. As a result, things like gas cans that normally rested on said docks were floating around in the lake. Our neighbors had some very short rec boats that we enjoyed open invitation to, so I decided to be a good samaritan and grab the detritus via kayak, which would also allow me to check out the lake in its tumid state. The lake was made in the '30's by damming up half of a shallow valley and allowing it to fill with rainwater. Today you drive over the dam to get to my folks place. On one side of the dam there is a boat ramp which serves as an overflow when the lake level gets too high. This particular morning water was flowing over the spillway pretty fast. It appeared as though after flowing over the narrow spillway, the current spread out and slowed down (reverse Venturi effect). I thought, "That looks like fun. I'll paddle over, get pulled through the fun part, then just stand up in shallow water and drag the boat back over to the lake and be on my way." As I paddled over towards the spillway, a little voice in my head suggested that this didn't seem like a good idea. In a moment of stupidity, I ingored it and paddled into the current. I didn't slow down the way I expected, but I was still able to get out of the boat and put my feet down. What I thought would be maybe one or two feet deep was waist high, and moving swiftly. I was standing immediately downstream of the kayak, holding the coaming of the cockpit in front of me. Ok, I thought, not what I expected, but there's dry ground 10' away, so no big deal. I just needed to pull the boat over to the edge of the current and re-enter the lake and paddle away. I lifted the boat slightly, by the coaming, and because of the current pushing against it, the lip of the coaming went under and the boat immediately filled with water. It bowled me over before I even knew what happened, and I was under water. I flowed, with the current, into a gully that sped through about 30 yards to a ledge, dropped 12', then went another 30 yards or so. I was under the whole way, but I knew I was very close to the surface. Still, the water was moving so fast that I couldn't get my head up and couldn't stop. I remember thinking that it was very bad, but that I shouldn't panic. I needed to stay calm and just get my head above water, get a breath, and figure out what to do. All the while I was reaching out and grasping for anything that would stop me, like a root or a tree branch, but all I got was rock and concrete, which cut my hand up (I still have scars). There was a moment of weightlessness when I went off the ledge, and I crashed into something hard, bumping my leg. After that I slowed down and stood up in knee deep water. It was March, so it was still fairly cold. I think the air was in the 40's and water in the 50's. I immediately pulled off my winter coat, which was shredded badly down the side and back. I started to check myself out by moving everything and patting myself down. My hand was bleeding some, but I knew that was just cuts and scratches and not a huge deal. It hurt a lot when I put weight on my right leg, especially in my calf and ankle. Satisfied that I wasn't seriously hurt, I limped up the hill and started walking down the road (it was about a mile back to my parent's house). A neighbor saw me soaking wet, bleeding, and limping and picked me up. At home, I got into a tub of hot water to warm back up. I squeezed my calf and there was a clicking noise that coincided with pain, which indicated a broken leg. I called my best friend, who worked for her orthapedic surgeon of a father, and arranged to come in and get checked out. Long story short, I broke my fibula and tore ligaments in my ankle. I was very lucky that I didn't drown. I later learned that I was out in flash flood conditions. I traveled almost 75 yards in underwater.

So how does this relate to the knife? I had my knife in my pocket that morning when I got into the boat. When I came out of the water, it was gone. I guessed I would never see it again. It's only 4 inches long closed, and it's black, so even if it was laying in grass it would be hard to see. There are a thousand places where I washed through that it could have settled down. It could have gone under a log, been buried in mud, washed into a crack somewhere. Anything. A few days later, after things dried out a bit, my dad was walking around down there, looking at where I went and marveling that I wasn't hurt worse, and there was my knife hanging by the clip on a small thin branch in some brush. We were blown away because it seemed so improbable that it would ever be seen again.

So today makes twice that I've been in kayak, had a spill of some sort (one rather serious and the other very minor) in which the knife was lost, assumed it wouldn't be found, and then returned to me by another person. That's kind of wierd.

The Knife

Fort Fisher to Battery Island Loop

Finally, after two weeks of bad weather on my days off, BIG paddling day today. We covered a lot of territory, both thematically and geographically. The Geezer picked me up at 7:45 and we rode down to the Basin at FF. There we met Lydia and Scott, Virginia and Curry, and Chris and Laine. The trip was proposed by Virginia as part of her research for an article on migratory birds in the area in a local pub. We launched into the falling tide and no wind at about quarter after nine. There were a couple of dolphin in the channel. Mike had heard tell of a dolphin carcass from his old ferry mates, so that was a first stop. All that was left of flipper was the poor animal's head. Strangely, he still looks kind of happy in a way.

Since that one above is a bummer, here's a picture of a live, happy dolphin that's still in water and has an entire body in a similar pose (I guess the pose is really only similar from the neck up):

After that charming little break we rode the river further down and stopped at this old defunct lighthouse, purportedly built during the Civil War. There are recently built steps inside.

I didn't check my watch, so I'm not sure what time we made it to Southport, but I'm guessing roughly 11:30. We ate and chatted at a conveniently placed picnic table and then walked around a little in the town.


After we got back on the water is when things really started to get interesting. The wind picked up a bit while we lunched, and due to the very nice spring day there was a fair amount of boat traffic on the water. In combination this resulted in considerable chop as we crossed the channel to Battery Island. About half-way across I heard someone yell "man overboard." Despite the well known fact that it's not a good idea to swim shortly after eating, a paddler rolled over. I didn't see it happen, but I'm told that it was a perfectly executed half-roll. Lydia and Rezac were both there immediately, so I continued across to get out of the worst of the chop. They got the paddler back in boat and the only real casualty was sunglasses. I was having fun punching through the waves in the channel when I realized that my dry bag, stowed in my deck rigging, was no longer there. This was bad, as it held my camera, cell phone, wallet, and favorite knife (a pretty expensive Benchmade that was a gift, more on this later, as there's an interesting coincidence here). I remembered exactly the wave that took it, because it washed my whole deck and splashed me pretty good, but that had been over 45 seconds previous. I spun around hopeful of finding it, but figuring that it was a lost cause in the chop, wind, and current. Luckily, Virginia saw it bobbing and snatched it out of the drink. All was dry and I was much relieved. From this harrowing experience, I learned a valuable lesson: always keep an observant paddler behind you so they can grab whatever washes off your deck (or, always lash your crap securely to you or your boat). There was a copse of trees on BI that looked, from afar, like they had giant white flowers in them. Lydia asked Scott, an accomplished arborist, what kind of tree they were. His reply, "Ibis tree." There were hundreds of white ibis perched in the trees, and they came and went in like numbers.


I also saw a little blue heron land nearby. From here we rounded the southern end of BI and paddled over to the marshes behind Bald Head Island. After one failed attempt through the marsh (where there were lots of turtles sticking their heads up), we found the right route into the big basin south of Zeke's. I never realized how fricking big that basin is. After paddling for eternity in 6" of water, we rounded Zeke's and paddled to the parking lot. The birding was quite good throughout the day. In addition to the hundreds of white ibis, I saw: ring-billed gull, laughing gull, herring gull, misc. tern (royal and/or caspian, and probably common), cormorant, pelican, great egret, snowy egret, little blue heron, tri-colored heron, american oystercatcher, willet, red-winged blackbird, grackle, osprey, turkey vulture, hooded merganser, common merganser, ruddy turnstone, yellowlegs, and misc. peeps. I'm probably forgetting something, but you get the idea. It was good. All told we covered about 14 miles, about six hours on the water. We enjoyed the falling tide on the trip out with no wind, and rode it back with a following wind on the return. It was a great trip with great people and I can't wait to get back out there again.

Thursday, April 2, 2009


No paddling today. Damned ugly weather has kept me inside, paying bills, cleaning, doing laundry, and reading. All worthwhile pursuits, but not what I was hoping for on my day off. Better luck Sunday perhaps for my paddle with friends in the lower reaches of the Cape Fear River.