Anything Is Possible

My West Virginia Mountains are home to some of our nation’s most creative problem solvers. The 3 rivers area of Gauley Bridge is no exception. In 1954 there were two problems. One, an old Greyhound bus that was no longer able to do bus stuff and a rock in the middle of the river with no fishing camp. Enter problem solver Walter “Bruiser” Cole. I have to admit that I never met this person and I have never been to his unique fishing camp which still looked like a Greyhound bus when I was a kid. I have never been able to figure out how he got it out onto the river either. But it’s been an icon of Gauley Bridge my whole life. I do remember talk in the 70s about the State trying to take his little camp away from him in a clean up effort. They called it junk! Such a unique and artful form of recycling and the State wanted it to go away.

In 2016 there was the worst flooding our area had seen in my lifetime. The News reporters call it the one thousand year flood. With all the damage to our entire state I thought for sure that it was the end of the bus on the the rock. But, on my next trip into town there was the little camp right there on the rock just like always. It kinda became a symbol of hope for me. If that camp could withstand the fury of both the State and nature in such an unlikely location then anything is possible as long as you’re anchored in the rock.

Today, the little camp has a new red,white and blue paint job and an extra room built on. From the front it doesn’t look as much like a Greyhound bus as it once did but the bus is still parked in the middle of the river.

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16 thoughts on “Anything Is Possible

  1. I was thinking that red, blue and white paint made it look very American and then I zoomed in and saw the American flag and thought yep, that’s the message. It seems like that bus could almost become one of the landmarks of your area. ☺️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is an unofficial landmark. (The owner is a WW2 veteran and thus the flag ). There’s a power struggle between the government and the owners of the fishing camps on the New River. The Federal government annexed the land and tried to condemn all the camps. (Leaving the tourist industry with prime access and shutting out the locals who have been there for generations). In this case, the locals won the rights to keep the camps but they cannot be sold. Only inherited.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I think it would be hard to get equipment to that spot. There is no road on the other side of the river. If I understand correctly the person who put it there used to build boats and sell them so I’m betting that he used custom built equipment.

        Liked by 1 person

      1. Don’t know, I can ask my dad. Bruiser is/was my great uncle. Him and my grandfather(his brother) put the bus out there when my dad was 3. They’ve both since passed on, but I’ve made some great memories out there growning up.

        Liked by 1 person

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