Blue Hole Summer 2004 Roadtrip Diary

Here's the final diary for my 2004 journeys up to Tennessee and to Blue Hole. :)

2004 Summer Roadtrip Diary

Dates Plans Comments
June 10th-11th Thurs-Fri roadtrip made! Drove up myself since no-one from Atlanta could get off work in time and overnighted at Heritage Inn in Cleveland. Awesome weather both days with near-perfect water temperatures. I was in the water from 2:30 til 8pm on Thursday and noon til 8 on Friday -- now I'm badly sunburnt, but I had a great time and it was worth it! Met some cool new folks and saw some familiar faces as well. Pics from the weekend are now posted here.
June 24th-25th Thurs.-only roadtrip made The forecast for Friday was pretty dire (100% chance of rain, with flood watches posted), so I just went home Thursday night and saved myself the room-expense. Despite some recent rains at Blue Hole the water was only slightly higher than normal, and warmer than I expected. Weather was okay, clousy but not too bad. Met some cool folks, mostly locals this time around.
July 3rd-6th Weekend-plus-holiday roadtrip made This was a lot of fun. Drove up Sunday, got fireworks in Tenn., drove back to Ellijay and stayed at my sister's timeshare cabin there, then did Blue Hole on Monday and Tuesday. Weather was okay both days, with storms later in the afternoon (tornado warning Tuesday evening (!)). Water higher and chillier than normal but not too bad. Quite crowded on Monday as expected, but not too bad on Tuesday.
July 8th-9th Thurs-Fri roadtrip made I was originally planning on driving up Thursday, staying overnight at my sister's timeshare in Ellijay, then returning to Blue Hole on Friday, but she cut her stay short and I stayed overnight in Cleveland, TN instead. Excellent weather both days, but the water was surprisingly high due, apparently, to heavy rain up there on Wednesday. Happily it wasn't as cold as I was expecting with the stronger flow, and it was reasonably clear, so we had two great days up there. Friday saw several familiar faces up there including Asa, Andy and (from a few weeks ago) Trey. I purchased an underwater camera (instamatic in a case) at Wal-Mart for $16.50, batteries and film included (!), and took some pics to start off the roll. Has flash, too (!)
July 14th One-day trip not taken I was going to go, but felt kinda tired. In retrospect this was probably a wise decision since later in the afternoon they got 2-3 inches of rain in that area, and flood warnings specifically mentioned Ocoee Dams 1 and 3.
July 23rd Thurs-Fri roadtrip made Wasn't sure until the last minute if I'd be going up for both days or not. Drove up Thursday and was in the river from about 3pm-8:30pm, with excellent relatively low water and warm water, too! Overnighted in Cleveland and returned to Blue Hole from 11am-3:30pm Friday; had to leave early so I'd be in Atlanta to welcome my friends in Bella Morte to town. :) Pics from Blue Hole are posted here (nothing too amazing).
August 6th Fri-only roadtrip made I'd requested Thursday off work, but a stormy cold-front came through that day and I decided to go to work instead. On Friday there was a lot of extra waterflow at Blue Hole from the rain, but the water wasn't too cold and the sky was almost cloudless. Got some tanning in and also met some really cool people, including Timothy, his friend Jordan and his mom, Julie, who were enjoying one last visit before school starts back on Monday. Pics are posted here; note Timothy showing where his leg got pretty badly scraped on a rock when he fell. Gotta be careful on those slippery rocks!
August 10th Tuesday-only trip made I'd originally asked off for Tuesday and Wednesday, but elected to make it a one-day affair on Tuesday to save some vacation time. Despite lousy weather in Atlanta, the weather up at Blue Hole was comparatively better. The river was lower than last week although not quite back to where it was a few weeks ago, and much clearer than last week -- I finally finished off the camera! Relatively small number of people there since school is back in session, but met some cool people anyway, as usual. :)
August 19th-20th Thurs-Fri roadtrip made With the end of summer fast approaching, I made the best of it and went up for two days. Thursday was almost perfect, but there were very few people up there all day despite great weather, warm and clear water, etc. Spent overnight in Cleveland at the Heritage Inn, as a planned stayover at my friend Dirk's mysteriously fell through, and had dinner with friends Gabrial and Derek at the now ex-City Cafe halfway between Cleveland and Chattanooga. Gabrial came up with me on Friday, but the weather was unsettled before the arrival of a cold-front, mostly cloudy, and the water felt cooler; Gabrial used a wetsuit and wasn't in the water much. A storm blew in at around 7pm, but I had already planned on leaving a bit early to get to WREK-FM for our usual Friday night metal show.
August 24th or so Roadtrip cancelled I had a lot to do at work, plus the forecast for Thursday was kinda lousy.
September 1st "Surprise" one-day roadtrip made I had the day off work, so I went up for the day -- the last time for 2004, since Hurricane Frances came through and dumped a lot of rain in the Ocoee basin the following weekend. There was almost no-one there, but the water was warmer than I expected with the cloud-cover and the skies, though cloudy, stayed dry. I returned to Atlanta by around ten to meet my author-friend Storm Constantine and the Immanion Press crew at the Atlanta airport, arriving from England for their visit to Dragon*Con.
Sept. into October No roadtrips made :( It was a busy month, with Dragon*Con over Labor Day Weekend and then ProgPower USA two weekends later. I'm a director of the former and a sponsor for the latter. Oh, well, it was still a good year up at Blue Hole, with less flow (and therefore warmer water) overall than in 2003. Looking forward now to 2005!

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1998 Roadtrip Diary | 1999 Roadtrip Diary | 2000 Roadtrip Diary | 2001 Roadtrip Diary | 2002 Roadtrip Diary | 2003 Roadtrip Diary | 2005 Roadtrip Diary | 2006 Roadtrip Diary | 2007 Roadtrip Diary | 2008 Roadtrip Diary | 2009 Roadtrip Diary | 2010 Roadtrip Diary | 2011 Roadtrip Diary | 2012 Roadtrip Diary | 2013 Roadtrip Diary | Current Summer Roadtrip Schedule |

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