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Wilderness Calls, GOING GREEN
The executive directors and staff; men and women of Wilderness Calls, packed their bags, traveled to the Wilderness Calls Camp; at Hokk Farms, in west central Georgia, and ended up paying tribute to mother earth by going green. (The generator died on us!) Wilderness Calls has been instrumental in protecting the environment in nearly every capacity. In terms of global warming, we strive for perfection. The Wilderness Calls Camp is off grid and alternate power is utilized in day to day operations. (The generator, you know, "Ol Reliable"!) Our ultimate goal of Wilderness Calls is to become one of the green companies, utilizing no fossil fuel, and releasing no harmful emissions into the atmosphere. The plan is to go to solar energy! Though no fossil fuels are utilized and emissions are minimized presently, these goals have not been entirely realized. We have been dependant on the generator. We are striving to reach this goal by the end of the year 2010. Living without energy was common for our ancestors', however living without power in the 21 century is a challenging experience at the very least. We have become accustomed to lights at our finger tips with a flick of a switch; clap of our hands, or with motion detectors. Without lights our ability to effectively carry out daily activities during darkness is significantly paralyzed. We have become dependant upon energy supporting our non-stop lifestyles. Our modern lifestyles depend upon energy, a loss of energy equates to a loss of normalcy and some individuals are unable to function without it, (you know who you are!) hence, the use of a generator out here in the wilderness. When power is unavailable, as it was during this outing, everything possible should be completed before dark, in particular the necessities, such as; cooking and bathing. Although both can be completed after dark the intensity of difficulty is greatly reduced if completed in daylight. During our stay heating and cooking was performed simultaneously utilizing the same heat source known by many names; the pot-belly, or wood stove. Cooking was also performed on the camp fire grill, this became challenging during rainy days, but this was made surprisingly simple by having a pyromaniac in our midst. (Please remember, a little bit of diesel can make a mighty big flare up when initially lit!) Heating bath water became necessary when the water was too frigid for bathing in the creek. We attempted to conclude all bathing before dark. If we failed, candles were utilized for lighting during the "bath period". Wilderness Calls creek water was drawn one bucket at a time from the spring fed creek at the Beaver Dam. During rainy days, rain water was collected and utilized. Although we all are experienced campers, every one of us was surprised how much water we normally utilize back home and how little we were actually able to survive on during our two week stay. We used approximately one-gallon of water per person for drinking, cooking, and dish washing. One/half- gallon of water per person per day for baths, however; hair washing increased the water usage up to one-to-two-gallons per person per day. A two and one half-to-three gallons of water per person per day was utilized for necessities. (This gets a bit much if you are the one having to haul these buckets back and forth!) Our total water usage for a conservative life style was; up to four gallons minimum water usage per person per day and up to six gallons maximum water usage per person per day. Over this two week period water usages fluctuated between person-to-person, however; a daily water usage average was maintained throughout the period. (We finally came up with a rule: if you want more water than is being provided, you can fetch it yourself!) All of this thought about water usage and such put me to thinking about other circumstances where water collection would be important so I did some research and thought I would share what I found. The amount of water usage per person is vitally important in areas of hurricanes, cyclones, monsoons, and earthquakes. Although water is plentiful in some storm systems, collection of the water during the storm is often dangerous and can be deadly. It is best to collect a water reserve in advance of a storm, however; some storms are without warning and in some cases a water reserve may be inapplicable. Hurricanes originate in low pressure areas in equatorial regions of the Atlantic or Caribbean strengthen and ravage the Tropical Islands, South America and the southern portion of North America. The tide surge, rain and high winds oftentimes damage water supply and may cause isolated water pollution to drinking water. The cyclone, is a large scale storm; with heavy rain and winds, rotating counterclockwise in the northern hemisphere, and clockwise in the southern hemisphere. Water supply oftentimes damage or polluted as a result of the cyclone. The monsoon has high wind and severe rain ravages South and Southeast Asia. Rainwater is often collected and utilized during power outage and loss of water supply. The earthquake results from the sudden release of tectonic stress along a fault line or from volcanic activity. The earthquake violently shakes the earth's crust, causing destruction to land structures and the water system. The tornado with it's funnel-shaped rotating column of swirling wind causes extremely isolated destruction. With no prior warning, water reserves are not collected or planned and with the isolated devastation is usually not beneficial. Maybe you learned a thing or two here, I certainly did! My comforts are important but water is a necessity that must be planned for sometimes!