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wausauloner - Sun Oct 23 2011

06:23 AM #
Day two of our duck tour upriver. Actually, we're leaving the Wisconsin River to go up the Rib River as far as we can. #zombie #zompocalypse

07:03 AM #
We're passing under the bridge that connects the town of Rib Mountain to Wausau. I helped a small group try to make a stand on it on Z-day.

07:06 AM #
I came upon a few sideways-parked vehicles on the bridge. People with guns were behind it, waiting for the zombies coming from the highway.

07:09 AM #
We held the zombies off for awhile, but there were too many of them and we didn't have enough ammo to do more than slow them down.

07:40 AM #
We're approaching I39 from the Rib River below. The highway above is so dangerous, none of us have attempted to travel up there since Z-day.

07:43 AM #
Shawn is using his tandem trolling motors to get us close to the twin bridges, slowly and quietly. We can see many zombies above, unmoving.

07:46 AM #
Many of those zombies have probably been up there for nearly two years--they were some of the first to reanimate on 10/30/2009

07:49 AM #
There are cars hung up in trees on slopes leading down to the river on both sides of the bridges. Their drivers tried to escape on Z-day.

07:53 AM #
Back then, just north of here, traffic backed up while some cranes maneuvered girders into place for a new flyway interchange with WI29...

07:56 AM #
The construction crew ran into some problems and the delay created a traffic jam several miles long. Then, the girder fell. People died.

07:59 AM #
Rescue workers arrived & treated the mass casualties. Among them was my friend Ted, an EMT. Another friend, @CarlPhillipsTV, was there too.

08:03 AM #
Carl was a TV reporter. He was on the Grover's Mill Grizzlies fan bus on the way to a playoff game, stuck in the growing traffic jam.

08:06 AM #
Carl got in close and tweeted about the rescue efforts from @CarlPhillipsTV. Then the dead started attacking their rescuers. He was killed.

08:09 AM #
I was unaware of those events that day until hours later. I was at the Wilmuth farm, just across the highway and up the road from my house.

08:12 AM #
I was with @ProfPierson, trying to stop another outbreak of the zombie plague. But one of the undead reached the I39 jam & started killing.

08:15 AM #
The two outbreaks, one on each end of the huge traffic jam, grew dramatically. Victims were trapped in the bumper to bumper jam.

08:18 AM #
People fled from one outbreak only to be confronted by people fleeing the opposite direction. Thousands became part of the zombie swarm.

08:21 AM #
Some people did get away, the wounded among them inadvertently spreading the zombie contagion to other cities, then other countries.

08:24 AM #
Those that didn't get away flooded off the wreck-choked exit and entrance ramps on foot in two waves. The pursued, then the hungry undead.

08:27 AM #
It doesn't look like we're going to be able to get ashore, but we've got our binoculars out and we're getting a good look around. #zombies

09:55 AM #
We're under the northbound I39 bridge over the Rib River. Shawn's best fish-finder sonar shows an unbelievable image: A submerged car...

09:58 AM #
The amber-hued display of the sonar shows the shattered windshield on the hood of the car, which is otherwise intact under the water...

10:01 AM #
When Shawn has the duck in just the right spot, the sonar can see into the car where a body, held in place by seatbelts, moves unnaturally.

10:51 AM #
We've gone further up the Rib River, but the water is low and the duck's tires can't find purchase in the thick mud left behind... #zombies

10:54 AM #
We are stubbornly trying to find a way ashore, however, because it looks like somebody used the Trails End bar as a hideout from zombies.

11:37 AM #
We've given up trying to get to Trails End. There may be something behind the boarded up windows, but floods probably ruined anything useful

11:40 AM #
This place flooded frequently even before the zombies came & disrupted our control of river levels. Anybody who survived here is long gone.

11:43 AM #
We may try to get here another time via Hwy R, which parallels I39 through the city. From below, we see fewer zombies up on that bridge.

01:24 PM #
We're back in the Wisconsin River, what's left of it, anyway. It's strange, seeing the effects of flooding on shorelines up above our heads.

01:51 PM #
We've crossed under the Thomas Street bridge. There's another wrecked dam ahead, so Shawn's going to go ashore at Oak Island Park #zombies

02:55 PM #
We made a bolt through downtown Wausau. No chance to explore--the duck's noisy diesel engine attracted too many zombies too quickly.

03:25 PM #
Back on the water after cutting through the old HammerBlow factory property off Fulton Street. Zombies followed us in the river, for awhile.

03:37 PM #
A chunk of the Bridge Street bridge has fallen away under the part of the structure where someone set a tanker truck ablaze on it on Z-day.

03:51 PM #
Shawn's duck is taking us through the northern part of Wausau now. A mostly residential area, zombie numbers are low, but consistent.

04:15 PM #
We're going ashore for the night at the 3M gravel pit the Fort NTC survivor group uses as a secondary base. Everyone wants to see the duck!