Tag Archive: gear


Well, that was a long time ago. That dread got buried under many more days of unknowing…and defeats. That initial feeling of uncertainty got lost in the brambles and dark shadows of each forest we explored. Each vine we cursed. It got lost under years of experiences and disappointments. It got lost under the Knowing.

We had never finished that initial survey. It had slipped our minds. Leave it to John to ruin a perfectly good forgetting! John reminded us that we needed to go and resurvey the reach at the site. I am not sure what went through Kristen’s mind, but I had a moment of utter shock. What? We had to what? Not that site. It was a nightmare. I don’t think Kristen wanted to go back any more than I did. But, we did.

As we arrived, I mentioned that I remembered the upstream of our reach seemed more visible. It might be worth recon to see if it was more typical of the stream before the hurricane damage. We know now that looking at the site would show severe affectations from the bout of hurricanes. This would have done considerable damage and possibly morphological (big word for shape of the stream channel) changes that wouldn’t be typical before the hurricanes.

Funny thing – hurricanes are natural. Even if a system was destroyed by natural events – it’s still natural – but, it’s not usually typical. We needed to ditch the crappy horror of a reach that we busted that day so long ago and find something that still resembled the original stream. This may not be as horrible as it was! Horrible – YES – but maybe, just maybe not as horrible.

The Knowing - everything has changed!

We packed and began hiking in. Huh? This doesn’t even look like the same site I remembered. The palmettos weren’t so bad, in fact, there was a path of sorts. The vines were just vines. Nothing like a hundred other sites. We got to the stream and…it was so cute! It was a little gem of a stream with some damage that was evident.

This would be a dream come true. A “cake” site. We could shoot this in just an hour or so! What? Had we really changed that much? Had we really been to so many difficult sites that this NIGHTMARE seemed like a picnic. We laughed. We cried….we remembered. We realized that all the years in the field had changed the way we looked at everything. What seemed impossible – was a vacation! We had done so many sites, hiked so many miles, seen so many things – this was nothing!

We finished our recon – the site upstream was PERFECT. We setup the shoot, and finished in a couple of hours. We took our time and went to the original reach – it was harmless. There were no monsters waiting for us. There were no dark shadows hosting our fears and doubts. There was only a stream that deserved better. I can’t explain what happened to us that day. I only know that there are fewer shadows. There are less demons and monsters.

There are more streams that deserve better. I only hope we get there in time to capture them and preserve the story they have to tell. But, I can’t help but wonder….where did all those monsters go? I hope they didn’t find you! If so, just walk past them into the dark murky water. Reach down into the rotting leaves on the bottom. Grab a handful and take a deep breath of them. Look between the ripples and you soon forget they are there!

It was a day much like any other. Kristen and I were clad in our drab and stained field pants and shirts. Completing the look that all women (and men) love were our beloved snake boots. Now, let me tell you something about snake boots. Snake boots are the most amazing footwear to ever be gifted to humankind. They are durable, protect you from snakes, guard your shins, shield your toes, break in pretty well, and are so darned cool that everyone will look at you if you were in them in public. How do I know this? Five years of wearing them – that’s how!

Kristen and I have very different types of snake boots. Without going into brands and such – hers are largely leather with zippers and mine tie all the way up. Both are 17″ and serve the same purpose – making us look decidedly cool. We do, however, WORK IN WATER!!! Imagine, if you can (although I hope you really can’t) the effect of long-term water immersion on leather….get there yet? That’s right – it ROTS. It’s animal hide….yup! Well, sitting in the truck, one day, I got a whiff of the most horrid stench. I asked Kristen what was dead and rotting…she replied, “My snake boots.” You know folks – she was right. They were so nasty that I wish I could have thrown them out the window! Problem with that is – Kristen is attached to her snake boots as I am to mine. When something protects you and makes you comfortable in the swamps, you develop a relationship with it – we LOVE our snake boots. Anyway, I guess other people found it unbearable and bought her these little plastic shoe balls (ha ha) and they really work. So, here it goes….

I smell snake boots!!!! Arrggghhhhh

Lesson 1: Purchase snake boots with the above in mind. Also, note that the tie ups are more secure. Zippers get sandy and silty and are hard to operate. They really do protect you from snakes – I got bitten on my boot before by a moccasin. They really do look cool with shorts and people will NOT forget you! They will secretly envy you wandering around the mall in camo shorts and snake boots and a pony tail. Men’s snake boots work better for me because I like more width. They are waterproof – that only works if the water is shallower than 17″ ha ha. They last about a year in deep water. Please go out and get some snake boots. You can find them at most outdoor stores. They cost around $100 but are worth millions. Plus – just think of your reputation! We are actually famous all over Florida as the Chicks with Ticks in snake boots!

If you have any questions about snake boots, please submit them as comments! Take a photo of you in your snake boots or hiking garb and send our way! We want to start sharing YOUR adventures as Chicks with Ticks and Guys who Love Chicks with Ticks (don’t forget the Little Chicks with Ticks)!! I hope the lesson has been helpful.

Boots + Shorts = SEXY!!

Snake boots can even be worn over waders!

Enjoy these looks at Chicks with Ticks…..

Real Chicks can laugh at themselves!

Chicks can take it!

What real Chicks with Ticks Do!!

You won’t want to miss the next episode….Chapter Three – Catfish Creek Part II

Real Chicks wear Waders!

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