I just had to walk to the river today. The dogs may never trust me again.
The river is my happy place,
just a few weeks of the year, when I can get to it.
Ticks, chiggers, poison ivy, mosquitoes, tall grass, wetlands, timber, and other ickiness make the path impassable most of the time.
I used to walk to the river from November to March with our old dogs, but the second pair of collies are tormented by snowballs packed between their paw pads, and I gave up the trudge with them.
Bugs. Thorns. Greenbriar, hog peanut, Virginia tickseed, stinging nettle, it's all coming, soon. Before it all hits, I just HAD to go to the river today .... it had been so long.
The derecho of 2020 felled so many massive trees, it may be years before any of my beloved pathways open again. Today, though, winter is officially over, and
I just had to go down to the river.
Ticks are already here, and that alone should have kept me from hiking anywhere with the dogs. Their monthly Rx meds kill the ticks, but the nasty little things attach to me, and Lyme disease is ever a risk. But let us not think of icky things to come. Let us go to the river.
The road. It was not a good sign, but I tend to ignore "signs."
This sign was new--in my 22 years of walking this county land, no such thing as "Pollinator" zone had ever been designated. Such a bright, colorful, pristine, new sign.
Sadly, when the prairie ended and my familiar path to the river began, it was no longer a familiar path. It was rough going for Prince, but he made it. We made it to the river!
There, I got my glimpse of the river; now, just turn around and retrace your steps.
Do not imagine you are going to follow the river like you did before, in better days.
Turn back. Turn back!
If only you could talk, Prince, you might have warned me, and I would have listened.
Alas, poor Prince!
There was no going back the way we'd come.
Photographs cannot capture the scene. I did not even try.
I felt lost in No-Man's land, an unmapped war zone with obstacles everywhere. I could straddle the massive tree trunks, but poor arthritic Prince could not. Bear was agile and able, as always. But even he got stuck, and I had to break branches and wonder where the heck the deer paths to the river might be.
Suffice to say, a 45-minute walk took 90 minutes today.
In August 2020, a historic derecho had taken down a majority of the tree canopy in our area. Almost three years later, these fallen giants block every path to the river.
Trees hundreds of feet tall lie there, too fat in diameter for our arthritic dog to straddle. Not after the first five.
Bear was a trooper, leaping logs like a circus performer.
Sorry, no, I couldn't capture it on camera.
A derecho swept across the states of South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio on Monday, August 10, 2020, leaving behind widespread and utterly devastating damage in its wake.
Winds reached as high as 140 mph, equivalent to a Category 3 or 4 hurricane.
That any trees at all were left standing is a miracle.
Afterward, all anyone did, for weeks, for months, was cut up branches and haul them to the curb for massive black truck with claws to haul away.
This photo is two years post-derecho and it gives you no idea how much debris had to be cleared away by human hands. I didn't think we'd ever walk this trail again.
More than 60 percent of our community's tree canopy was devastated. Massive, colossal, toppled trees kept parks and hiking trails closed for more than a year.
Winter came and went,
then another winter, but the uprooted trees take forever to break down.
as the dogs do, I know the woods will heal and the pathways reform.
I have failed to capture on camera
the devastation in the woods, the traps that ensnared my poor collie, who has been on daily pain meds since age five for arthritis pain. Both Prince and Bear are seven years old, but Prince is not aging well. He's massive, built like a Clydesdale, a hundred pounds to Bear's fifty.
I will drive you next time we head to any river, Prince!
Carol Kean is BAAAACK! I'm so happy! Deliriously happy! I love your posts. I think you were one of the first authors I fell in love with on Hive.
Have you not been able to walk to your happy place since the derecho? I'd forgotten about it, but boy if you lost 60% of your canopy, I'll bet you never forget about it.
Prince looks pretty good in these photos. He must be some trooper.
I hope your walk to the river, despite the problems, helped you recover some more peace and joy.
You're the best, Stacey!!!!
Thank you for your enthusiasm and support!
And thanks to #GEMS for the generous upvote.
Now to get into the logistics and sort out how to access my wallet to transfer funds, award prizes, delegate, all that fun community stuff.
Thanks again! I am actually moving again, slowly, yes, but not stagnating, that is something. :)
How terrible for all of those tall trees, 2020 was just a rotten year for everything.
Oh yes, indeed, 2020 was a historically awful year.
That derecho in August hit right after businesses had finally started opening again.
Glass windows were smashed. Stores were shuttered again.
Doctors and dentists had finally opened again - only to be closed due to NO POWER for a week.
Hospitals relied on emergency generators.
Many many cancellations - so soon after we had just reopened, at last.
Everyone lost shingles and many lost entire roofs.
Barns, sheds, garages, and many cars were smashed by falling trees.
I'm just amazed at the trees that still stand.
Many have busted limbs, so they look like amputees.
The worst are the headless pine trees.
Just cut the poor thing down...
We deal with hurricanes, it sounds as if a derecho is just as bad.
The worst are the headless pine trees.
Just cut the poor thing down... I am laughing.
I need to photograph some of these decapitated pine trees.
WHY do people leave them standing....because, how much work it is to cut down and cart away the carcass of a mature tree.
Soooo many trees that withstood the derecho are amputees. Huge branches are broken off, yet the tree lives on.
I had gotten so accustomed to our battered, broken landscape. Most of it has been cleared. But that morning by the river, where so many colossal trees had fallen, blocking all access, was an eye-opener.
Here's hoping 2023 is a better year for you, @myjob! And for everyone. :)
I would have thought a logging company could use the tree, instead of cutting the healthy trees down. Or people who heat with wood, there must be a use for them since they are already down.
@carolkean! You Are Alive so I just staked 0.1 $ALIVE to your account on behalf of @myjob. (5/10)
The tip has been paid for by the We Are Alive Tribe through the earnings on @alive.chat, feel free to swing by our daily chat any time you want.
Good point: why don't logging companies come along and cart away the colossal fallen trees?
A very large area lost more than half its mature trees, so there were logs aplenty.
we used to see mountains and mountains of wood chips downtown.
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Sorry to see that, 😞
Good to see You though, I haven't seen You on this in a long while.
"Most things will heal, the memories remain though".
Wishing You a Good Week!
Thanks Lesmann - wishing you a good week, too!
It's already Wednesday....??
Where do the days go????
They zip right by...😲🤭😊
Have a Great Thursday!