Someone sent this story to me in the email.  Part of this story is true, I will leave it up to you to decide...................

One lovely June day Esther and Gene decided to go to Lost Creek and take a few pictures of a cave. This cave is way back in the woods and off the road quite a bit. Gene eased the big red and white truck along the rutted dirt road and finally found a spot big enough to park and get out for the picture taking. They walked(and walked) to the spot in the creek where the cave is located and sure enough, it was there and the location was beautiful.  Esther was delighted with the prospect of getting these  breath taking pictures for their web page which is enjoyed by so many here in Washington County and around the internet world.  The camera worked perfectly and Gene stood by giving just a little advice regarding light and distance.  He is a very helpful person and capable of handling emergency situations. After the picture taking they spread a blanket in a quiet glade by the creek and had a snack and cool drink. They decided a little rest would be in order before the walk back to the truck so they laid down and put their arms over their heads to shield themselves from the sun. In no time Gene was snoring lightly and even Esther, our insomniac ,was napping. Suddenly, she had an eerie feeling as if someone was nearby, possibly watching them as they rested. She peeked from under her arm and sure enough there was Mr. Bear,waiting for her to take his picture. He was standing on his hind feet with his front paws in the air and his nose was twitching with the strange smell of human in his area. He gave a soft growl which did not sound all that friendly to her, very much unlike Pooh Bear at home on her shelf. This Pooh Bear weighed about 200 pounds and when standing was about four feet tall! "Gene", "Gene", she whispered so as not to disturb Mr. Bear but Gene was fast asleep. She gently lowered her arm and Mr. Bear took one step towards them. At this point, she jabbed Gene in the ribs with her elbow, he sat up and said, "WHATSUP?" as Esther disappeared down the trail with Mr. Bear scratching his head at the wonder of her speed. Gene could see little puffs of smoke as she had set the leaves on fire with her departure. Now what am I gonna do? he thought. But, no problem the fire from the leaves scared Mr. Bear and he took off the other direction. After watching to see if he was going to return, Gene took a picture of one of the tracks left by Mr. Bear and quickly made his departure for the big red truck. However, the ever vigilant fireman put out the fire before he left. Upon his arrival he thought Esther had disappeared ,but she was rolled up in a little ball in the floorboards ,and when he opened the door she threw the picnic basket at him, and it flew open so that he ended up with marshmellows in both ears. The trip to Potosi was made in short order and Esther was seen in WalMart looking to buy new tennis shoes as the soles on her old ones were so scorched she left black tracks everywhere she went. Great pictures Kids, keep up the good work! But maybe you might do your napping at home!!

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BEAR TRACK - While on historic/scenic photo taking expedition 10 June 2001 in Washington County Gene & Esther Carroll found what they believed to be a bear track. They photographed it & later it was confirmed by the Missouri Department of Conservation that the track was indeed a bear track. The track measured approximately six or seven inches long & about four or five inches wide at the toes & appears to be that of an adult bear weighing perhaps 200 pounds or more.


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