I went to ask my dad for directions to Kellacey Falls in northern Morgan County, KY. I hadn’t been there in a little while and I knew there was an intersection where I either had to go straight or turn right. Given my past results on taking true and false tests in school, I did not want to leave that decision at fifty percent. It always seemed like I gave (or guessed) the wrong answer much more than half of the time on those tests. I am a statistical marvel, or as my wife says, “It is a marvel at how bad your sense of direction can be.”
My 86-year old father was a rural letter carrier in Morgan County for close to thirty years. He went past Kellacey Falls every day he delivered the mail. After getting directions from him, I turned to leave and hurried to the door for I knew what was to come…
“Don’t you dare go by yourself. Call your brother!”
I did not get to the door in time.
With my 58-year old head hung low, I left that same house feeling as if I was ten years old again. I knew I had to call my 62-year old brother for security. Sometimes things get pretty rough going through Tom’s Branch and Dehart.
On the drive out to Kellacey Falls, I was glad to have my brother in the car with me. It had been too long since we had been together, just the two of us.
My dad called me on my cell phone, which is a marvel in itself, to see how we were. It had suddenly occurred to him that he had sent both of his sons out into the wilds of Kellacey. He shuddered to think that not just one of his sons could fall over the edge of the falls, but he could lose both of us. Our foray into adulthood and past midlife still did not give him the confidence in our ability not to fall off a cliff. Little did he know that I fell just a few short minutes previous to this adventure, trying to navigate a one-foot step at my house, falling gracefully to the gentle clutches of Mother Earth. Also little did he know that my protector was at one time on his belly, in the mud, peering over the 200-foot rock ledge proclaiming how high we were. Some passers-by may have thought “high” had a different connotation.
A picture like this took some planning.
I ordered a remote control device for my camera just for this photo. I put my camera on my tripod and fully extended it. I used a 7 mm fish-eye lens. I set up a step ladder on the edge of the falls and wedged my tripod between the step and the pail shelf (yes that is what it is called, I looked it up). The tripod with the camera is now extended out over the cliff, so I put a concrete block on the lower step of the ladder to weigh the ladder down so the weight of the extended tripod would not cause this setup to tumble over the edge of the cliff.
At one point, when I was close to the edge, I felt a little tug and looked down. My older brother was holding on to my belt loop…my protector. Dad knew what he was doing after all.
Of course my protector wasn’t holding on to anything else.
If you like this picture, you can see more of my photos here.