C. S. Lewis said, “Friendship is the greatest of worldly goods . . . . It is the chief happiness of life.” This is what we have in Toccoa—a circle of friends and it has made all the difference during these extremely tough times.

Evan was the first to jump off the rock ledge at Lake Yonah, but I did not do so well capturing it. Jim asked me if my camera could go any faster? Sigh. It’s the story of my life: I need a faster camera, but on these jaunts I need a rugged, waterproof camera.

Sharon was next in line. I thought this must be a little like being in Hawaii and watching cliff divers”jump.” Well, barely, but you get the picture. I realized she was really going to do it and this time, the camera would capture it.

She springs forward. Nice move, I thought, and good push off away from the rock ledge! In fact, an excellent move given the fact that we had already rolled a kayak and had to perform one rescue.

Straight down into the water. I wondered if she was asking herself how deep is this lake. There was really no chance in hitting the bottom since I read, I think, that it is about 80 feet deep. (Yikes!) Lake Yonah is a part of a chain of lakes that were built by Georgia Power, that include what we call the “seed” lakes. Lake Seed, Lake Burton, Lake Rabun, and Lake Yonah. All are fed by the Chatuge River. But the river changes names as it travels south. This is why we say the Tugaloo River actually runs through Yonah. The lake has 9 miles of shoreline and only about 85 people live here or have summer homes.

Evan, who would swim with his brothers in this lake as a boy, told us that there are no roads to most of the houses. This means that people had to bring building materials in by boat or barge! The river continues on past the dam into Lake Hartwell where it eventually joins with the Savannah River and then empties out into the Atlantic Ocean.

Splash down!

Finally there was a peace sign. The college students always give me either a thumbs up or a peace sign. It must be part of the culture. Notice Pat in the background: the only one (outside of Jim), who did not get wet and came away looking great. She told me later that she would have jumped in but she was not wearing waterproof mascara! 🙂