Thursday, August 3, 2017

Assabet Springs to Life

Got out on the Assabet River in Acton today to see first-hand the effects of yesterday's deluge of rain.  The USGS gauge upriver in Maynard told the story.  The gauge height went from 1.6' on Tuesday at noon to 3' by mid-afternoon thanks to a thunderstorm that stalled over the area.  By 11 am this morning the level had dropped to 2.4' which was just about perfect for my purposes.  The extra depth allowed me to paddle/walk my boat upriver to the Powder Mill Dam (pictured above) and then paddle down to Damonmill and back. 

Of course I heard the dam before rounding the bend and getting this first glimpse of it...

These Cardinal flowers were thriving on the island below the dam...

The higher levels allowed me to explore the slough up to Old High Street where downriver paddlers would enter after portaging the dam...

Several ospreys were heard and seen...

When I returned upriver to the Acton Canoe Launch I caught a glimpse of something swimming upriver...
...and was a little surprised to see a snorkeler rise up out of the river...

A reasonably small amount of trash gathered up along the way...


On Tuesday I ventured out to the Millers River in Athol launching at Alan E. Rich Environmental Park and headed downriver...

In traveling down to Orange and back I ran across a few oldies but goodies like this poor doggie...
...and these old bottles...

The green one was the most interesting as it was embossed with "Morgan Memorial Goodwill Mineral Water" of nearby South Athol.  In doing a little online research I came across this reference in the 1927 Pioneering in Modern City Missions by Edgar James Helms of Morgan Memorial Goodwill: "For unknown centuries there has been flowing out of the solid rock on our plantation a beautiful spring of cold mineral water  The water has been analyzed, and pronounced of fine therapeutic value.  During the years, hundreds of sick folk have testified to having been healed of rheumatism, skin, and other diseases by use of this water.  We are now preparing to carbonate it and put it on the market." 

The bottle was in very good condition perhaps having been last filled in the 1930's or 1940's.  Here it is ready for service...
Wonder if the spring still flows from the solid rock.

Other, less noble, trash encountered along the way...

2 comments:

George said...

I saw my first Cardinal flowers the other day. Couldn't help but think of you. Keep up the good work.

Trashpaddler said...

Hello George, Thanks. I do like admire those flowers but wish they'd hold off blooming a little longer since they signal the beginning of summer's demise.