20 July 2013: A summertime visit to the Great Meadow

meadow_panorama_20july2013-2I made a sojourn up into the Great Meadow at the northwest end of the lake today, my first since last February and I took a bunch of pictures which have I combined into the panorama at left. It is composite of 7 photographs and it’s been scaled to 50% and at that it’s still 4904 x 713 pixels. I defy you to detect the seams! There’s a link in the caption so you can view or download the full sized image. For those of you who can’t make it out there, hopefully this picture will give you some sense of the impact the draw down of the lake is having.

I am in awe whenever I visit this vast wetland sanctuary. My first exposure to it was in 1960 when I was a child of 7 and my father took me across the lake in a canoe and down the channel to the dam and back. I’ve spent many a hot summer day fishing out there.  I’ve hunted ducks out there. I’ve near froze to death out there one December when I was jump shooting ducks and capsized my canoe in water so cold I had to break ice to get to shore. I’ve even gone through the ice while skating on the channel.  So it was with a little trepidation that I ventured out there today. With the lake level down 50″ below the top of the dam I didn’t expect to see any water but I wasn’t prepared for the lack of wildlife. This prime wildlife habitat should have been teeming with birds and critters of all descriptions but there were none. No ducks. No geese. No song birds. No wading birds. No muskrats. No sound. Nothing. Not even any dragon flies though that might just have been the time of day. There were a few deer flies buzzing around my head but I think they followed me all the way from home. Even so, it was a beautiful scene as I’m sure you’ll agree, but it should be full of water. It sure was green though.

It will be a few years before this 350 acre piece of wildlife heaven is fully restored to it’s original grandeur- the damage done to the ecology of the area is staggering. But it will be restored and the process will start as soon as we can get water back on it, and that can’t happen soon enough.

1 thought on “20 July 2013: A summertime visit to the Great Meadow

  1. George Fergusson Post author

    Well David Hodsdon apparently likes a challenge! He spotted 2 of the 6 seams where the 7 pictures were joined. He’s got some experience with this sort of thing as he owns one of those robotic Gigapan camera platforms and has made some nice panoramas.

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