CatCamping at Oconee River

The majority of my hiking & backpacking is solo. I enjoy being able to go at my own pace, take time to notice critters, and wonders of nature.

However, the solitude in the woods becomes particularly lonely at night around a campfire & in the tent.

Last minute decision Friday – to take my cat, Velvet, along for the weekend. She’s an indoor cat & quite obedient. Her “brothers” beat up on her a lot, so I thought she might enjoy a “break” from them.

We drove down to the Oconee River Campsite, set up the tent and put Velvet in her carrier in the tent. She wasn’t particularly pleased at first, but by nightfall, Velvet was contentedly sitting on my lap at the campfire.

Around sunrise, we had a surprise as a squirrel was in the vestibule. Squirrel & Velvet were face to face with the mesh between them! I thought she might go after it, but she looked at me as if to say “WTF?”

After breakfast (Velvet had some Greek yogurt), I put Velvet into her harness and in my daypack. She was “cushioned” with a towel. I put the pack on backwards, so she was facing forward. We headed down to a grassy spot by the river and she watched the turtles & fish splashing with fascination. Velvet seemed content in the pack, so we started off on the Scull Shoals trail. We’d stop to look at the river, smell branches and listen to the birds calling out.

We made it to an open area on the trail, so I took her out of the pack to sniff the ground. She has been tolerant with the harness, but the retractable leash freaked her out. She took off and the harness came off! I called out for her to stop w which she did. (Lesson learned)

Velvet & I sat on the rocks of Scull Shoals for lunch – she enjoyed some turkey while watching the gar splash around. The weekend was cool but storm clouds were growing. We headed back to the tent.

Amazing how relaxed Velvet was in the tent. She had her bed but would snuggle with me at times. We had heavy rains Saturday night thru Monday am. I had my Nook, plenty of tunes. Velvet had a laser pointer, tummy rubs & treats to keep her happy. The heavy rains on the tent did not bother her at all.

Monday, we planned to hike to the Indian Mounds but spent quite a bit of time trying to find FS Rd 1231/A. Called local ranger office & even they couldn’t direct us.

But, we rescued a turtle in middle of road and discovered some picturesque old wooden homes & barns. I’ll be going back when i get better details to get to trailhead.

Here’s some pics…

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