Wednesday, August 21, 2013

A walk on the prairie


Been thinkin' lately
too much, too deeply
about too many things "Enviromental"
Corn/Bean prices
Tiles and drains
Politics of course
Endangered species lists and successful failures, like...............
If you go extinct, well then I guess you're off the list

Last week one evening I took a stroll on the prairie with a close friend
His fortish acres of prairie/wetland complex restored by his hand
Reclaimed from Big Ag
Only one tenth of one percent of the real thing exists anymore in Minnesota
But prairie aint on the list

Nice to see and smell and feel a little slice though
it helps

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Late for the King

It has been five days since I walked the trails over on the other side of the lake.
Of course the Boletes came out to play in my absence
All past tense now
Riddled with insects
Ah, but to be a little beetle

The summer has taken the turn as we tilt ever faster toward autumn.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Experiments in extermination

Purple loostrife   Lythrum,salicaria
Exotic, beautiful, invasive.
There is a clump of this stuff that grows in the Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge and I first made it's acquaintance in the summer of Y2K. It was blooming profusely, but looking somewhat forlorn as it was the only one of its kind amidst a vast expanse of cattail, sedges, and wild rice. I determined to prevent it from spreading, so cut off its flowers, stuffed them into a sack and deposited them in the local landfill.
Each summer I visit the site and do some mayhem to this persistent plant. It has been pulled out by the roots, cut down to ground level, had its flower heads removed, even shoveled out one year when I was more ambitious.

It has not spread, but comes back every year. I cut off the flower heads again this year - twice !!

Standard operating equipment

Over the years a lot of time has been spent in one of these boats.
Fishing, hunting, freight hauling, wild ricing, and of course canoe tripping and camping.
Grumman 17' aluminum canoe, designed and first manufactured in 1944.
These sturdy canoes revolutionized travel in the BWCA up until the time of Kevlar and Royalex.
But I had never actually owned one, as they are ubiquitous in the north country.

So, I saw one sitting on the side of the road the other day with a "For Sale" sign attached.
The 85 year old widow who was selling and her late husband had paddled thousands of miles in the days of their firmity through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness - years before it was a designated area.
Well worn, dented, straightened, beaten and patched - the stories it could tell.
It does not leak.

Home it came
Like I need another boat.............