Emergency Medical Procedure

Sandy Bottoms-Up Campground
Cassville, Wisconsin
August 27, 2019

Dear Family & Friends:

Except for my medical emergency, this was a fabulous day.

I departed Marquette at 8:30am. The elements were kind to me. The wind was at my back and the current was swift. I passed the Arlyce Randall tow, which was headed downstream, but parked along the side of the River to allow another tow, moving upstream, to occupy the channel. After five hours of paddling, I reached Lock & Dam No. 10. I confidently radioed the Lockmaster requesting passage downstream in the Lock. His reply: “turn around and you will see a tow bearing down on you.” I looked behind me and, sure enough, the Arlyce Randall was right on my butt!  Since this tow was pushing 12 barges, I knew I was in for a long wait. All my plans for a high mileage day washed down the drain.

I pulled my canoe up on the rocks and walked into the delightful and clean town of Guttenberg. I ordered a plate of nachos from the “Dam Bar on the Dam” restaurant. As a Mexican food connoisseur, I would rate these nachos a 4-. NEVER make nachos with velveta cheese.  But, I digress.

One and a half hours later, I was being happily locked down the River. At 5:30pm, I found the perfect campsite, just south of the town of Cassville. The Sandy Bottoms-Up Campground has a nice dock to secure my canoe and a grassy area to pitch my tent. I will call Sandy tomorrow morning before I leave to request permission or forgiveness. Using Google Maps,I located the Anker Inn Smokehouse as the perfect place for dinner. I walked about a mile on the highway and it was closed. Can someone from the Midwest please explain to me why all the restaurants close on Tuesday? Makes absolutely no sense.

You are probably wondering about the medical procedure. For the last week, I have been suffering a lot of pain in the heel of my left foot. I was noticeably limping to avoid the pain. In Marquette, I had to take action. Here’s my diagnosis and medical treatment. The skin on my heel was very rough and dry. Finally, it split open, leaving a very painful wound. Fortunately, I brought a medical kit and was able to skillfully treat the wound. Now, I suffer no pain. Stitches? No. Amputation of the heel? No. Well, see for yourself in the photo.

This was a 29-mile day.

That’s all for now.


Loading a barge
The Arlyce Randall beats me to Lock 10


It’s not that hard being a doctor


10 thoughts on “Emergency Medical Procedure

  1. Bill, the barges in tow pictures will make a fabulous photo book which we can all enjoy in a Mexican restaurant with 5☆ nachos on a California Tuesday!

    Paddle on–can’t wait for the next post!



  2. Haha, good old duct tape! A good treatment for painful foot calluses that fissure is crazy glue. Just place a small amount along the fissure, air dry, then repeat a few times. This allows it to heal and alleviates the pain. The key is preventing the fissure in the first place with Emory board/ pumice stone and lots of lotion.
    Keep us riveted with your amazing journey. Love your journal!
    Paddle on!

  3. Sorry your perfect day was ruined with the problem with your heel. From the photo it looks like you had a medical remedy for correcting the problem. Not so pretty but functional. Good job.

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