Thursday, April 11, 2013

Old Stone Fort State Archaeological Park

It was a beautiful sunny 83 degree day yesterday but storms were forecast for today. The day started quite nicely, overcast but with a high around 72, so we headed off to Old Stone Fort to check on the wildflowers and the waterfalls. Old Stone Fort is located on the edge of Manchester, TN, so it's practically in the backyard and we visit often. I've never camped there but drove through the campground the first winter I was here. It's very wooded with mature trees and undergrowth.

From the TN State Parks website:

"The Old Stone Fort is a 2000 year-old American Indian ceremonial site. It consists of mounds and walls that combine with cliffs and rivers to form an enclosure measuring 1-1/4 miles around. The 50-acre hilltop enclosure mound site is believed to have served as a central ceremonial gathering place for some 500 years. It has been identified as, perhaps, the most spectacularly sited sacred area of its period in the United States and the largest and most complex hilltop enclosure in the south. Settlers tended to name such enclosures “forts.”
The spectacular setting occurs where two rivers drop off the plateau of the Highland Rim in Middle Tennessee and plunge to the level of the Central Basin of Tennessee. As the forks of the Duck River cut down from the plateau level they isolate a promontory between them before they join. This promontory was further set apart by the construction of long, wall-like mounds during the Woodland prehistoric period.
At the narrow neck of land between the two rivers there is a set of parallel mound walls oriented to within one degree of the summer solstice sunrise. It was typical of ancient societies to recognize this significant farthest north sunrise and to hold reenactments of creation myths at such times. Mound sites such as the 50-acre Old Stone Fort provided modified landscapes for ceremonies that may have represented in some way the culture’s concept of their place in the cosmos and a separation of the sacred and mundane or pure and impure."

There was not a huge variety of flowers blooming yet, but I managed to find a few.

And of course a shot of Fran doing what she does.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Sibling rivalry

I still haven't started on the Caboose, but I did add another vintage camper to the herd. This Shasta 1400 is from the early 70's, it's another "no title" project, but at least it seems to be in better shape than the Caboose. Negatives: there is water damage in both upper rear corners, the original fridge is long gone and an air conditioner has been put in the spot the fridge used to occupy, cushions and fabric need replacing, the running lights are non-functional, door handle is broken off but still works and there are two holes that were cut in the floor for ice fishing. Positives: it tows beautifully, it still has it's wings and most of the gas light fixture inside, the window glass is all intact, and I'm told the electrical inside all works. Not sure about the stove. I think if I reseal the edges and around the roof vent to keep any more water from getting in I would be able to camp in it for the summer without any major work. It's parked in MN with a tarp over it until I get up there to work on the roof.