Wednesday 29 May 2019

Mountain Ladyslipper

    Another of our local orchids that is presently in bloom is the Mountain Ladyslipper (Cypripedium montanium )  Some of them are growing, and spreading around my pond along the path.  I also see them growing along the ditch beside the road because they like disturbed areas.  In the reference book I have it says they can take up to 15 years to flower, but they bloom a lot quicker around here.  
    I always felt the long twisted purplish sepals (leaf-like structures coming off of the flower) gave a sinister feel to the fragile white “slipper” part of the bloom.  I have done one painting of the Mountain Ladyslipper 

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Tuesday 28 May 2019

An Orchid in the Yard

    While I strive to encourage wild flowers in my lawn, I was surprised to see that this orchid had come up in the front yard.  It is called a Striped Coralroot ( Corallorhiza striata).  I have seen the plant before growing in the bush, but this is the first time I have found it in my front yard.  
    While people generally think of orchids growing in tropical areas, there are quite a few that grow in British Columbia.

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Monday 27 May 2019

A Prayer For Owen Meany by John Irving

    The BBC surveyed its listeners, (I think it was either in 2003 or 2006) to see what their favorite books were.  From their results they made a list of the Top 100 Novels.  For May the McBride Library’s Book Club had its members pick a book from the list and read it.  I read John Irving’s A Prayer For Owen Meany.  Here is my review:

A Prayer For Owen Meany by John Irving 
         A Prayer For Owen Meany is a novel of two childhood friends growing up in New Hampshire during the 50’s and early 60’s.  The main character is Johnny Wheelwright and his best friend is Owen Meany.  Owen, although the same age as Johnny, is extremely small in size, so small that the other kids always pick him up and pass him around, when the teacher leaves the classroom.  When Johnny and Owen were 11 years old, Owen was just the size of a five year old. 
      Owen, however was extremely bright, serious, observant, and opinionated.  It was not just his small size that made Owen unique, he also had a voice which was very high and screechy. Because his home life left much to be desired, Owen spent a good deal’  of time over at Johnny’s.   Johnny lived in his grandmother’s big house with his grandmother and beautiful single parent mother.  Johnny’s mother doted on Owen and treated him very sympathetically.   Owen loved Johnny’s mother. 
       Both Johnny and Owen played on a Little League team. Due to Owen’s small size, he didn’t get to play much.  But one particular day, Owen did get to bat, and amazingly got a solid hit on a ball.  It flew foul, and hit Johnny’s mother in the face, killing her. This devastating accident impacts both of the boys’ lives and becomes a central event in the story. 
       The tragic accident tightens the friendship between the boys, which continues through their elementary, high school, and university years.  Through it all, Owen’s character and intellect cause him notoriety, but he usually managed to get out of trouble he created, unscathed.  Throughout his life Owen felt sure that a God had made him the way he was for some big purpose, and the reader can’t help but wonder and anticipate the event. 
       At the end, the novel does tie up a lot of the loose threads were left dangling throughout the storyline.  That was a relief, because as I read along through the book, I was often puzzled and frustrated about why certain things happened.  
       There were many sections that dealt with religion; Christian denominations, and ministers and their beliefs, that I certainly could have lived without. They didn’t really add anything to the sweep of the novel and often felt like fill.   Johnny ends up living in Toronto and much time was spent telling about his religious life there.  Very little relevant information for the story happened in Toronto. 
     I found it interesting how the tale played out. There were hints of things to come, that gave the reader an inkling of what would happen to Owen in the future, but the reality of that event was different from what the reader had expected.  
     Because this coming-of-age story covered approximately the same time period as my life (mine happened about four years later) I enjoyed being reminded a lot of the events and lifestyles of those times that were mentioned in the novel.  The Kennedy’s, Vietnam, immigrating to Canada, and hating Reagan and the rightwing madness of the US, were all were part of my life too.  I particularly related to the line:  “After almost twenty years in Canada there are certain American lunatics who still fascinate me.”
     I also could relate to Johnny’s friendship with Owen, because in my youth, one of my best friends was much smarter and more aware of things than I was and he kept me informed of events in the wider world. 
     Luckily when I got to the last page, things made more sense,  which elevated my opinion of the novel, that had  suffered during all the slow sections when it bogged down.  I certainly wouldn’t rate it in my top one hundred, and I didn’t enjoy it as much as the other John Irving novels I have read, but it was okay. 

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Sunday 26 May 2019

It's Your Reflection, Stupid Bird

    I was awaken at 5:00 by a commotion.  I got up to investigate and found it was a Robin flapping around and pecking on a window in my studio.  “Oh no, not again,” I thought.  This has happened numerous times during previous springs;  a male robin sees his reflection in the window glass then thinks it’s another male Robin in its territory, and begins to attack it’s reflection.  
    The attack is unrelenting and will not stop.  The only way I have found to stop the stupid bird from banging it’s brains out, is to cover the window so that the robin can no longer see its reflection.  So after breakfast, that’s what I did.  I covered the window with a foamy plastic sheet that I had handy.   Relieved at solving the problem, I began preparing to paint my morning square, only to be interrupted again, this time by a different sound.  
    It was the robin again, but this time he had spotted his reflection through a screen door, on the house door window.  He kept flying against the screen in an attempt to attack his rival.  I grabbed another piece of foamy plastic sheeting and covered the screen door.  I haven’t heard the robin since, but as you can see from the photo, I can no longer look outside.

    Many years ago, when a male Robin was doing the same thing to a window, I found it dead on the ground.  He evidently attacked the window too aggressively and ended up killing himself.

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Saturday 25 May 2019

Geez, Not Again

    For the last two summers, residents of the Robson Valley have had their mountains obscured by smoke from distant forest fires and have had to breath the toxic smoke fumes for weeks at a time.  Those fires happened during late July and August,.  
    Here it is not yet June, and yesterday forest fire smoke moved into the valley.  I think this smoke is from the forest fires from the now tinder-dry areas of northern Alberta.  The fires began blazing last week, causing the evacuation is a couple of towns.  
    Again, like last year, I don’t want to make it sound like I am bellyaching about how rough we have it with the smoke, our situation is insignificant compared to those people intimately effected by the fires.  They are the ones who are really suffering.  My anger is directed toward all those willfully-blinded people who manufacture doubt about what is happening to our planet, and try to prevent any actions that try to mitigate or slow the path that Earth is on.
    I realize that they have money in the game, but something a whole lot worse than them losing money, is where our planet is headed, and not for just a few, but for every single human being of the future.
    The photo below show the setting sun last night.  It was an intense red, however it’s brightness was too much for my camera to handle, so I have tried to give you an idea of what it was like by using Photoshop.

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Friday 24 May 2019

They Hung Me From a Lamp Post

    Excuse the over-dramatic headline, but I am excited.  They hung up some new banners in town yesterday and they feature a photo of me and my friend Jim, walking through the Ancient Forest.  
    Last July I ran into Matthew Wheeler, an amazing local photographer, and he told me he was done putting in his hay, and wondered if I was interested in doing an “art trip” to the Ancient Forest.  Of course I was, so we contacted Jim, a mutual art council friend from the past, and arranged the trip.
    It is always an inspiring experience to wander through the Ancient Forest, and we went crazy taking photos. Jim and I left eventually left Matthew behind on the trail because he is such a perfectionist that it always takes him longer to take photos.   Anyway we all had a great hike, and we all came home with lots of pictures.
    The photo you see on the lamp post is one of Matthew’s.  He told me about the banners last week, but it was still a surprise to see them up against the blue sky as I walked down the sidewalks of McBride.  That’s me in the red shirt.
    Below is a group photo of the three of us that I took on our trip last July.  Matthew is the guy fiddling with the camera and Jim is in the white shirt.

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Thursday 23 May 2019

Up On Sunbeam Falls

    We get our water directly from Sunbeam Creek.  We have a 4 foot (1.27 m) culvert sitting upright in the middle of Sunbeam Falls to collect the water, which then runs 4,100 ft (1.2 km) to my house.  During the spring all of the snow on the mountain tops begins to melt increasing the volume of water thundering down the falls in strength and volume.  The current picks up and carries a lot of rock and gravel down the falls also.
    We have a heavy duty gravel screen which we put over our culvert to prevent the culvert from filling up with rock, but a lot of the finer pieces get through and can clog up the fine screen we have over our water intake.  Yesterday our water pressure was beginning to go down so we went up to replace our water intake.
    It is very dangerous work.  The falls is something like 355 ft (77m) in elevation and our culvert is about halfway down the falls.  The photo doesn’t show the hundred foot drop below our culvert.  Like I said it is dangerous work.
    The photo shows Glen, my neighbor in blue, standing on top of the gravel screen which covers our culvert, scraping off the rocks stuck on the screen.  You can see the orangish-brown top of the board at Glen’s feet.  We pull that up which opens a hole in the bottom of the culvert, causing the water in the culvert to pour out, carrying out a lot of the gravel that made it into the culvert.
    We were able to change our intake screen, so hopefully we won’t have to mess with our water  system for a while.

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Wednesday 22 May 2019

Forget-Me-Nots: A Raggedy Lawn

    Slowly over 35 years, more and more Forget-Me-Nots (the tiny blue flower you see in the photos) have been taking over our lawn.  They have spread because I like seeing them, and instead of mowing them down whenever I mow the lawn, I mow around them.  I will do this until they form seeds, then after that, I will mow them down.  
    This of course makes my lawn look pretty ratty, but I would rather have the blue patches of forget-me-nots than a uniformed manicured lawn.  The only problem with doing this is that often a few dandelions or other unwanted weeds grow among the Forget-Me-Nots and I am usually too lazy to pull them out so they keep growing also.  
    Anyway, I like having the patches of the Forgot-Me-Nots in my lawn, they remind me of a wild natural meadow, and plan to do what I can to encourage them.

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Tuesday 21 May 2019

I Love Hostas

    Because we have a lot of shade in our yard we were always looking around for some kind of decorative plant that liked a lot of shade.  Somewhere down the line we discovered Hostas.  They love the shade and they have become one of my favorite plants.  I have probably painted more pictures of hostas than any other subject.  
    Our hostas have just sprouted through the Lily of the Valley and have opened their leaves.  Once again, like hundreds of times before, I couldn’t resist grabbing my camera and taking photos of them.  

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Monday 20 May 2019

Greens and Blues

    Way back in the 70’s. James Taylor came out with his Sweet Baby James Album.  In listening to his song, Sweet Baby James, I was immediately struck by the lyric, “Deep greens and blues are the colors I choose” because those nature colors were my colors also.  Every Spring I can’t help but think of those lyrics as I watch those first leaves of the trees start to show themselves, set out in front of the blue mountains.  
    It is the young leaves of the Aspen trees that I most enjoy (I seem to have a thing about yellow-green as many of my paintings confirm.)  I don’t really know if yellow-green really qualifies as “deep” green, but that is the color “I choose.”
    Here are some photos I took of the greens and blues at Horseshoe Lake yesterday.

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Sunday 19 May 2019

Bald Eagle

    On yesterday’s walk my wife pointed out this Bald Eagle sitting high on a Cottonwood tree.  With all of the subdued blues and greens that surrounded us, the white head really stood out.  The huge bird sat there the whole time, allowing me to get some photos.  Some eagles spend whole winter in the Robson Valley feeding mostly on the carcasses of animals that have been killed by vehicles or trains.

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Saturday 18 May 2019

Raindrops on Lupine

    This morning after I painted my square, I realized that I didn’t have any photo to blog about.  I did what I have done in the past, I decided to walk around the pond in hopes of coming upon something to photograph.  
    We had a nice spring rain overnight, so all of my lupines were sporting water droplets.  I have taken numerous such lupine shots before, but I found these two lupine leaves and they are today’s blog photo.  I am not sure what it is about lupine leaves that make the rain droplets keep their shape rather than collapsing and running down the stems, but it is a nice trick that makes a ordinary drop of water look like a jewel.

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Friday 17 May 2019

Train Whistle

    Yesterday while talking to some neighbors, we were told about an elderly, long-time resident of the Robson Valley who has had to move to Prince George for medical reasons.  They said that she had told them that what she really missed since leaving the valley was not hearing the train whistle.  I about choked when I heard that, because I would really welcome not hearing those terribly loud whistles.
    We live a mile or so away from the train tracks, but there is a crossing way down below us where the trains are required to blow their whistle three times when approaching the crossing.  Our house is situated on a slope, higher than the tracks which are on the Valley bottom.  Despite all the trees, which one might think would buffer the sound, the train whistle carries beautifully upward and is very loud.  During the summer, when we occasionally open our windows to cool off the house over night, the whistle sounds like the train is just outside our house, so normally we keep the bedroom window closed.
    It may sound romantic to hear about the train whistle reverberating and echoing through the mountains, but it is something I would happily live without.

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Thursday 16 May 2019

My Pond Began Attracting Wildlife

    A couple of weeks ago I began blogging about how I made my pond.  It’s purpose was to create habitat for wildlife.  Slowly that’s exactly what it did.
    Fortunately, during that first winter the pond did fill with water, and the following spring living things, previously unseen on our property, started making an appearance.  Even though the banks began as nothing but bare clay, ducks appeared.
    In an attempt to get some plant growth started, I spread old hay (bedding for my goats in the barn) on top of the dam to hold the moisture in so that grass could germinate.  The ducks soon discovered that my wasteful goats had dropped oats in the bedding, and the ducks had themselves a feast.  I’m sure that encouraged them to hang around, and somehow spread the word.
    Among the water fowl that came to the pond, were some spectacular looking ducks.  I had never seen anything like them, so rushed to my bird books and discovered they were wood ducks.  I learned that back in the 20’s and 30’s wood ducks almost disappeared due to heavy hunting, but they had since been making a comeback, and here they were swimming around in my pond.
    The wood ducks were incredibly flighty.  I would watch them from the window with binoculars, but even though my house is 100 m. away from the pond, if I went outside and just peaked around the corner of the house, they took off.  Over the years, they became used to me, and I could walk along the dam, and they remain swimming along the far shore of the pond. 
    They would congregate in the spring, (one day I counted 42 of them).  A few nested in the tree boxes I had provided and the rest flew off to go elsewhere.  They disappeared during the summer, but in the fall, they usually returned to congregate again.
    Sadly, the wood ducks disappeared.  I haven’t seen any on my pond or other local bodies of water for about 10 years.  I don’t know what happened to them.  

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Wednesday 15 May 2019

Lone Tulip

    There is only one tulip left in the small flower garden beside our side walk.  At one time there were more, but over the years they have died off.  The foliage that you can see are that of Lily of the Valley, Columbine, and a fern.  The lone tulip was on the verge of opening yesterday when I snapped this picture.

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Tuesday 14 May 2019

Bear In The Bushes

    Last evening, I glanced out of the kitchen window and noticed a unexpected black area behind some bushes in our yard.  When I took a second look, I realized it was a black bear.  Can you see it in the photo?  
    It has been a long time since we have seen a black bear in the Spring.  Normally they show themselves in the Fall, when they are “carbo-loading,” getting ready for hibernation, and wrecking our fruit trees.  We used to see them down on a neighbor’s field in the Spring, sitting in the sun and eating dandelion flowers, but now the area has grown up so much with trees we can no longer see down there.
    This bear had a healthy respect for people, when I tried to sneak outside to get a better photo, it took off, even though I was trying to be very quiet and inconspicuous.
    It always makes me happy to see that bears are still around.  It means that things out in the bush are still healthy enough for them to survive.

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Monday 13 May 2019

Bee's Clustering on Daffodils

    I noticed some black areas on a daffodil the other day, and at first I thought that some kind of disease  or fungus had infected the bloom.  When I took a closer look I discovered that it was a cluster of bees.  They didn’t move just sat there like they were in a stupor.  They weren’t going after the nectar, just sitting there.  I was puzzled as to what was going on.
    Yesterday at the Dunster Mother’s Day Yard Sale, I mentioned it to a guy who knew a lot about bees and he figured that they had spent the cold night there, together to stay warm, and that they wouldn’t start moving around until it warmed up.  I had taken the photos at 9:00 in the morning, when it was still cool, so I think that is probably the correct explanation.  Later in the day they were gone.

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Saturday 11 May 2019

A Grizzly and a Moose

    While we are always on the lookout for wildlife when we drive through the parks, we really hit the jackpot on Monday.  In Robson Park we saw a Grizzly bear.  These giants are an uncommon sight, so when you get to see one, it feels like a privilege.  This one was walking along the margins of the highway right of way.
    A bit later on our drive we saw a moose walking along a marshy area.

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Friday 10 May 2019

Overlander Falls

    It’s fascinating to me the way that so many of the unique and spectacular sights are all clustered close to each other in one area, which fortunately are now parks.  Overlander Falls is part of Mt. Robson Provincial Park, and is located on Hwy. 16 just a short distance east from the Mt. Robson Viewpoint.  We have driven past the falls innumerable times, but I have only walked down the path to see them, only one other time in my life.
    I was glad we made the time to do it again last Monday on our trip to Jasper, because it was well worth the little hike.  It wasn’t Overlander Falls itself that I found so spectacular, although it was, it was the amazing water, which was crystal clear and had a bluish green tint, that captured my heart.   Here are photos.

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Thursday 9 May 2019

Jasper, Alberta

    I sometimes mention Jasper in my blog and I realized that many readers may not have any idea of what Jasper looks like, so the other day when we were in Jasper, and I had some time to kill, I took some photos of the town site.  It was nice to walk around Jasper on Monday, because the tourist season hasn’t really started yet, the winter ski season is over and the summer throngs haven’t yet arrived, so the town was nice and empty.
    The shot above shows the Jasper train station.  It was the building of the railroad in 1911 and the influx of mountain tourist that put Jasper on the map.  
    The photo below shows the main tourist drag, full of restaurants, mountain sports supply shops, and gift shops.  Take away all of the tourists and Jasper is pretty much just a small town.

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Wednesday 8 May 2019

Moose Lake, Mt. Robson Provincial Park

    To get to Jasper we travel east on Hwy. 16 through Mt. Robson Provincial Park.  Along part of the trip the highway parallels Moose Lake.  We were surprised to find that it was still partially covered with ice.  It created a spectacular scenic view with the clear water reflecting the mountains on the far side of the lake.  Here are two of the photos I took.

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Tuesday 7 May 2019

Bear Incident at Mt. Robson Park

    We drove to Jasper yesterday, and whenever we drive through the parks we are always hoping to see some wildlife.  We saw lots yesterday, but our first view of a black bear had us shaken for a while.  As we drove toward Mt. Robson on the long slope down below the Terry Fox Rest Stop we noticed a car, a tourist bus, and a pickup truck with flashing lights parked ahead of us beside the highway.  We slowed down, not knowing what was going on.  
    The car pulled away, as did the tourist bus, leaving the pickup with the flashing lights.  We then saw a black bear down on the margins of the highway leisurely munching away.  I passed the parked pickup (it was a BC Conservation truck) and as I drove slowly, I watched through the rearview mirror.  The Conservation Officer got out of the truck, grabbed what looked like a rifle, aimed it and fired.  I saw dust fly up at the edge of the road above where the bear was eating.
    I couldn’t see the bear because it was below the road, but I assumed the Officer had fired a warning shot and expected the bear to take off for the bush.  I didn’t see that happen. 
    Then I wondered if the bear had been tranquilized and expected the Officer to slowly walk toward the bear.  He didn’t.  Instead he got in his truck and pulled out.  
    By this point I was driving really slowly, watching through the rear view mirror.  Both my wife and I were horrified wondering if the Conservation guy had just killed the bear. 
    The pickup slowly caught up with me.  I was hoping it would pass so I could turn around and go back and see what happened to the bear, but the truck continued to follow me.  I finally just turned left into the Mount Robson Tourist Center road to lose him, but the pickup turned too.  I pulled over and parked, and so did the Officer.
    I got out of the car, walked over to the pickup and asked what had happened up there with the bear.
    The conservation guy then explained:
    There had been a grain spill from an accident on the side of the highway several days ago, and ever since the bear has been coming down to eat the grain.  The Officer figured it would only be a matter of time before the bear got hit by a car on the highway, so every day he would go down and shoot the bear with a paint gun (he showed me the gun and the paint pellets). 
    He was trying to discouraged the bear from eating there.  He said he could use rubber bullets, which would hurt the bear, (he said he probably should because the bear keeps coming back), but so far had only used the paint gun. 
    The officer figured I probably had the wrong impression about what was going on (I certainly did) and had followed me to explain.  Both my wife and I were thankful for the explanation, because we were both really upset thinking that the bear had been killed.  
    As we continued our day trip to Jasper, we were both really relieved knowing that the bear had just  been chased away.
    This episode was just the first to make our trip to Jasper a memorable one.  More about our trip tomorrow.

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Monday 6 May 2019

How I Made My Pond, Part 3

    I had my pond dug in the Fall of 1993, so I went into winter with a giant hole in my pasture.  It snowed ,got cold, and I had my fingers crossed all through the winter of 93-94 that the hole would eventually fill with water, and fed by underground springs, that is exactly what happened through the winter.  By the time Spring arrived my pond was full, and held the water.  I was so relieved.
    Even though the dam was bare ground and pretty naked looking, I was very excited about how the water looked.  It was a beautiful turquoise color, caused the light gray color of the clay on the bottom of the pond.  Unfortunately, that beautiful color slowly disappeared over the years as debris and aquatic plants began to blanket the bottom.  
    Well, I had myself a pond, and one of the reasons I had it built was to increase wildlife habitat, and I knew that it would take time for that to slowly happen.  I’m sure I will touch on my pond’s evolution in future blogs.

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Sunday 5 May 2019

How I Made My Pond, Part 2

    One of the most important things on Earth is topsoil.  Topsoil has developed over thousands of years through the slow breaking down of organic matter from the plants and animals that had lived in the past.  When I had my pond dug, I didn’t want the topsoil that once sat there be buried and covered over by clay when constructing the dam, so I had Dutch, who was driving the cat,  first strip off the top soil and then spread it out onto the areas of the pasture that wouldn’t be destroyed by the pond. 
    The photo on top shows the dark topsoil spread on the pasture and the bulldozer digging and shaping the pond.
    I designed my pond to have about 2/3rds of it between 4-5 foot (1.2m -1.5m) deep, to create a  relatively shallow area so that sunlight could penetrate the water and allow aquatic plant growth.  The rest of the pond I was hoping to make about 15 ft. (4.5m) deep.
    As the bulldozer dug down into the clay of the “deep” section, suddenly it hit a sandy layer and I told him not to go any deeper.  I was afraid that this sandy layer might cause the pond to leak.  As a result my pond is only about 9-10 ft (2.7m - 3m) deep.
    The sandy layer we had hit worried me, however there wasn’t much I could do about it but cross my fingers and hope that my pond would hold water.
    It took 3 days of “Cat” work to finish digging the pond.  When It was done, as I looked out on the big hole in what used to be my pasture, I couldn’t help but worry about what I had done.
    More about the pond tomorrow.

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Saturday 4 May 2019

How I Made My Pond

    One afternoon, maybe twenty-five years ago, I was sitting at my draughting table at the Forest Service Office, working on a map.  One of the things I liked about the job was that it enabled me to listen to CBC radio as I worked.  That particular day on the radio they were interviewing a man from Saskatchewan who had built a lake on his property, and had written a book about how he had done it.  My interest was peaked.
    As he spoke I began to daydream about how nice it would be to have a lake or a pond on our property.  It  was so nice to be around bodies of water and there weren’t many lakes around McBride.  I had always wanted to do something to enhance wildlife, and a lake or pond would create a new home for a lot of different kinds of plants and animals.  My daydreaming about building a pond began to more and more convince me that it was something that I should do.
    We did have a pasture right below our house, that we no longer used for horses (photo above) and it  growing up with weeds and buttercups.  It seemed like a perfect place for a pond. 
    Okay, I decided to pursue the pond building idea.  I jotted down the name of the book, and author at the end of the interview (Unfortunately, the name of the book, and the book itself are now gone).  
    When I got the book I started reading through it.  It was full of information that I had never considered, like how important wind blowing across the pond was for getting oxygen into the water and preventing stagnation.  My pasture got lots of wind, so that wasn’t a problem.  My pasture was clay, which was perfect for holding water.  I wasn’t sure about getting water into a pond, but I figured it would eventually fill just with the rainfalls.
    I then spent a lot of time in the pasture with a clinometer (a small instrument that was held up to the eye that I used at forestry to measure the slope of the land)  My pasture did slope downward, and I discovered that I couldn’t use the whole pasture for a lake because at the far end the dam would have to be too high to hold the water.
    I marked out the area that seemed the most reasonable place for a pond and used flagging tape on the fence posts and trees for the boundary and the needed height of the dam.  I was ready to go, but I found the decision to actually start digging, terrifying.
    What if I got the big hole dug and it didn’t fill with water?  How would our property look with a big ugly hole in the middle of it? 
    In the fall, I finally took a leap of faith and called Dutch, who had a Caterpillar tractor.  We set a time and he came out with his machine and started digging the hole in the pasture.
    The story continues tomorrow.  

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