Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Paddling in Sandy's Wake

It's two days post Hurricane Sandy and her trailing clouds are still hanging tough (opening photo).  In addition to the storm's keeping me off the water, this paddler was also laid low by lombago.  In fact today was the first day in a week where paddling was even a possibility.
I launched at Lowell Road in Concord, Massachusetts and paddled downstream on a swift flowing, and considerably higher, Concord River.  It soon became apparent that with the river's rather quick rise, a lot of trash had been released from the banks and shrubs.
My bow-mounted crate was full before I'd reached the Old North Bridge.

At the Monument Street bridge, I saw some of Sandy's recent havoc...
Fortunately for the homeowner, the large pine fell towards the bridge and took out another tree before blocking one of the bridge's portals.
 
For the most part, storm related damage around here pales by comparison to the images I'm seeing from NY and NJ.  Hopefully those folks can get back on their feet soon.

At Sawmill Brook, water from the Punkatasset Hill area was hurrying across the top of a small dam on its way to the river...

Most of the rain received locally from Sandy came last night during some trailing bands of thunderstorms.

At Buttrick's Hill I turned around and began the trip back upriver.  A red-tailed hawk did his best immitation of a belted kingfisher and repeatedly flew ahead of me...

A little ways above the Old North Bridge, a yellow Lays Potato Chip bag drew me close to the shore where a white-tailed deer was bedded down.  By the time I got my camera, the deer had stood up and was trying to figure out what I was...
Once again had it not been for a piece of trash, a wildlife encounter wouldn't have happened.

In addition to the wildlife, only 2 other boaters were seen on the river today.  One was a powerboater taking advantage of the higher river levels, and the other was local kayaker, Jeff, in his exotic racing kayak.

Back at Lowell Road, the day's trash haul stood up to be counted...
 
 
There were 29 recyclable containers (12 redeemable) and 42 pieces of miscellaneous rubbish such as plastic bags, nip bottles, a dozen styrofoam bait tubs, and a set of matching red pillows.

4 comments:

BaffinPaddler said...

Love the photo of the deer!
Every time I visit your blog I can't believe the trash haul you recover. I think of you almost every time I paddle now and think how lucky I am where I paddle in Canada that I hardly see any trash in the water or one the shoreline. But when I do see trash, I say, "I have to pick that up" and I mention The Trash Paddler to others, then later on in the paddle, I may hear another paddler say, "Hey, look what I found. I picked it up for you!"

Cheers from Canada. Thank you for what you are doing for the environment and for inspiring others to do the same.

Suasco Al said...

Baffin Paddler, You're very welcome and your kind comments are appreciated. I sure hope the waterways of Canada remain relatively trash free.
Down here, we're kind of stuck with the "throwaway society" mentality where convenience trumps all else. Hopefully we're capable of changing that. Cheers from down under. Al

Bernie Paquette said...

I think the deer was saying THANK YOU Trash Paddler for cleaning up the debris!

Suasco Al said...

Or perhaps the deer is thinking "Who the heck is this clown and why is he disturbing my riverside siesta?"