Life on Helena’s island

Published 11:46 am Monday, August 4, 2014

The island near the Buck Creek dam waterfall is a popular summer attraction in Helena. (Contributed)

The island near the Buck Creek dam waterfall is a popular summer attraction in Helena. (Contributed)

By LAURA BROOKHART / Community Columnist

Consider going down to chill on the island or in the waters near the Buck Creek dam. Thousands have this summer. You might want to take a picnic or grab burgers, ice cream or iced tea at nearby local restaurants.

Enjoy the clean restrooms nearby before you enter the waters.

Avoid anthills on the walk to the island.

Chill in your folding chair midstream.

Look for mussels, gold nuggets and rocks shaped like arrowheads in the creekbed.

Take a count of the number of shoes and flip-flops, kiddie shorts and underwear that have lost their owner.

Walk across the top of the dam while the water is low, usually late July, and you are still young and nimble.

Walk your dog(s). Throw balls in water for your dog to fetch.

Ensure that dogs are properly attired to express your collegiate football preferences— orange and blue collars and bows, or red.

Walk your children. It’s generally safe to let them off leash, but you must remain vigilant.

Wade and throw rocks, but not at others.

Wear shoes while wading or prepare for the ultimate cool stone massage for your bare tootsies.

Bring your boom box; boogie board, maybe a fishing pole, but go downstream to cast.

Bare and burn in a skimpy bathing suit, if you must.

Wear your tiara if you are a former beauty queen or aspire to be one.

Float downstream on an inner tube, preferably not all the way to the Mississippi.

Count the number of trains that pass through. Halt conversation for trains.

Think about the sheer folly of enacting a noise ordinance in Old Town.

Be careful not to drop your phone in Buck Creek.

Be grateful that texting or taking selfie while standing in Buck Creek is not cause for electrocution.

Practice your soccer skills in nearby grassy area.

Turn all the somersaults you feel like on the island.

Take 135 photos, 123 of which will be throwaways.

Watch half-a-dozen photographers taking baby photos on the island.

But, don’t try to catch the turtles!

Consider contacting David Butler of Canoe the Cahaba at 874-5623 to book your canoe trip to see the further reaches of Buck Creek and the Cahaba River.