Double Whammy Workparties….

American Hiking Society Volunteers back at Odlin Park, Lopez Island

Here is Leader Sandy’s account of yesterday’s double work party on Patos Island, Both Keepers of the Patos Light and American Hiking Society Volunteers were on the island!

Sandy:

Thanks to you all! What a great work party!

From now on the blackberries had better beware! Gary B. annihilated them with his “saw on a stick,” Tom sliced them off with his unique blackberry tool and Laura and Duane got up close and personal with that invasive. Parvin and Terry hauled them off to oblivion after cleaning every one of the campsites (all 7 of them). OJ mowed up and down and all around until Laura wrested the mower away from him. Jennifer completed her transects (an accomplishment since they were in the brush). Gary F. and partner Jeannie joined with Linda to set up and prepare the lighthouse for the visitors and the volunteers.DSCF5814

We were very fortunate to be joined in our maintenance by the AHS volunteer vacation group and Nick on their last day in the San Juans. They worked on clearing the trail and cleaning the beach (alas no sea stars found).

 

All in all it was a beautiful day and a rewarding experience; thank you all so much for your time and efforts, so appreciated by the Parks personnel, the BLM and me. Good job!

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Our next work parties are scheduled for July 22nd, August 7th and September 16th. Let me know if you are interested.

 

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My Life on Patos Island Part Two: By Patos Bill LaVergne

Bill Tee Elaine 1953

Elaine and T Titterington with Patos Bill (right)1953

We left off on part one of my Life On Patos where I had arrived on the Island.
The longer I stayed on Patos the more I enjoyed it.
My duty shift was from midnight to eight am. Everyone else were in bed sound asleep. I went to bed at 8am.
I then got up for lunch and got busy with chores all afternoon. We did a lot of painting, building new cement sidewalks as the wood ones were pretty much ready to be retired. They sent us two CG guys from Seattle to help with gathering sand and gravel to make the cement we needed. They took buckets down to the beach area with our skiff boat and brought the gravel back up to the mixer that sat next to the tram in front of our houses. Needless to say it took quite a few trips to collect enough to make enough for a batch of cement. It was a long Summer task.

Our Island life was like living on a farm. We planted a large garden and we raised Chickens and  had a few goats also.Patos garden 1953
Summer time was also time to get some fishing time in.
We  had family and friends that would come visit as well as boaters who would come view the lighthouse. So it was always a time looked forward to by us.

One of the enjoyable things I looked forward to was our weekly runs over to Orcas Island to pick up the mail and buy groceries. That was good because we made friends there and it added to our not forgetting how to interact with people other then the 6 people on Patos.
Andy and Kathleen our Canadian light keepers across the water from us would visit in the Summer.
We would often get called out for a rescue of people who had run their batteries down ETC. One time it was a group of Navy personal that we helped get their craft running again. Did we ever love them having to ask the Coast Guard for help. I’m sure they never told anyone about that. We of course told every one about it.

Birthdays were celebrated with a dinner of the Birthday persons choice. It was just like a family get together at one of our houses.
When TV came to the islands we received a set and it sure was great for keeping up on what was going on in the world and to watch programs.
As I stated before Patos became the” Light In My Life”.
Patos Bill