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Pockwock Watershed

Posted Jan 15 2009 7:50pm
We got out for a bike ride yesterday as I planned though we were foiled by a fence and thick woods so had to turn back after 10k (more about that later). Still, 10k in and 10k out over rocky hilly terrain was quite the workout. Our journey hadn't even begun when the neighbour's rabbit hopped over to say hello. This was at the Wookie's house by the way. His neighbour Robert is the world's best landscaper and lawn keeper. He has a few pheasants that roam the area as well as the rabbit. I don't know how this WHITE rabbit has survived any number of predators. The Wookie lives about 17k from me and is much closer to deep woods than I am. So off we went. The area we were headed to is actually very close to where the Wookie lives. It's part of a protected watershed, with a water treatment plant 10k into the woods. There are some logging roads but very limited logging is going on. My first stop for a picture was a noticeable pile of sawdust in the middle of the road. Closer inspection revealed a decaying piece of wood.
And even closer inspection reveals a hole in the wood where a boring insect, probably a beetle, has gone into the wood. This is how some beetles live, boring holes into decaying wood and eating stuff. If it weren't for beetles eating crap, we'd be a really stinky planet.
Anyway, the trek continued on and at about the 5 k mark, the road became an overgrown trail. We could still make out where the tire ruts were but it was maily overgrown with grasses and weeds. We wondered about the frequency of trucks coming back on this part of the road as it appeared few, if any, had been here in the past year. By the time we got to the water treatment plant, we realized why. There's a shiny chain link fence around the plant and all kinds of no trespassing signs. We couldn't get through the fence and the woods apeared too thick to walk the perimeter. According to the trail maps and google earth we should have been able to go right around the lake that is the centre of this watershed. I particularly wanted to see the damn at the lake. So we turned around.The way back was going to be a little easier as it was generally a downward slope. There were still some hills to climb, but overall it was easier. Until I got to one hill and my chain slipped - and so did I.
It was a harder fall than my first one a few weeks ago and what the picture shows is just a tiny bit of the damage. Both legs are bruised up a bit as is my left hip/butt. I seem to be fine today, no worse for wear.

The Wookie of course.
One of our rewards for the trek. At this point we're about 8 k from the main highway and where we parked. It was mostly a gray day with some mist and fog early on, but we had a few breaks of sunshine here and there.
Of course there were some butterflies; this one is now part of my collection. It was on its last leg, so to speak, as it only had 3 legs (evidence of close calls with other creatures) and its wings were quite shabby. We also managed to see a gorgous milkweed type butterfly that eluded capture. The Wookie said my picture must be posted at the Butterfly Post Office as I could barely get near it.
There were two of these paw prints on the road and no others. No human tracks nearby. Probably coyote.
Another reward. These little "swamps" are all over the place and are miniature worlds all on their own. The next trek in that area will involve taking the right road as opposed to the left and we'll get to the lake going that route.

We've had very little rain since last night and it looks like Hanna will hit the Bay of Fundy which is north of us so we'll be spared (or at least less affected).

Now to plan the next ride!

S.
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