Dan Gisvold at Bear Creek

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Camp Nelson

Camp Nelson. A name and a place that Bill, Dan and I have known since we were born. Our great-grandmother, Barbara Flynn (we all called her "Cese") and great grandfather, Owen Flynn (Dada) built the cabin on Federal forest land in 1923. Our mother spent every summer there all through her childhood.
Cese sold the cabin in the late 40's and our father bought it back in 1955.By that time a lean-to bedroom had been added as well as a full service bathroom. One must have a flush toilet inside and a 6' claw-footed bathtub! Until electricity came to Camp Nelson the bathwater was heated on the wood stove.

Dad added a bedroom and a bathroom that you could get to without squeezing behind the wood cook stove. And just a few years ago, Bill had a kitchen built on to the place and added 600 sq ft of deck. The mice still get in and the bedroom and bathroom aren't insulated but it is still our cabin.

Cese named it Tres Pinos for the three Ponderosa Pines that grew on the property. We use to sleep on the back deck under those pines and awaken to gray squirrels firing pine cones at us. Dan was always yelling at the squirrels.

The place was for family. We went as often as possible and when we were grown it was the meeting place for "reunions". In this picture you can see Dan in the red shirt, our niece Jill in the forefront, our father, Giz slightly to the right, our mom, Barbara behind him. Little niece Erica is right in the front and in the very back is Uncle Eddie. (Edward Reardon, married to our mother's sister)

Camp Nelson @ 1980-81
Dan was most at home at Camp Nelson. The red dirt, the pines, the scrub oaks, the wildlife were all part of his being. He loved hiking and fishing and hanging out at the store to gab with people. It was his kind of place.

He wanted more than anything to live there. But we own a lease on federal property and living there year round is forbidden. Besides, we all owned the cabin and all the nieces and cousins have the right to share in the family history of the place. No one was ever told they couldn't stay at Tres Pinos. So living there would have been a problem.

So, after he moved back to California , Dan bought the cabin next door to Tres Pinos. He planned to fix it up and live there every year from April to October. He never got the chance.

We plan to scatter Dan's ashes there in the spring. It's what he wanted.

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