Saturday, April 19, 2008

The Wetlands at Island Drive Bridge

the posts of the old coal docks on the Kaministiquia River, with the place where the Thunder Birds nest in the far left, beyond the Island Drive Bridge. Just a few 100 metres towards the bridge is where the original Fort William was located.

twiggy reflection. Interesting plants growing out of the old dock stumps

an owlish stump with the waters of the Kam reflecting the overcast sky

On our way out to Mission Island Marsh to look for swans, my sister, my neighbour and I decided spontaneously to explore along the Kaministiquia River before the bridge [We never made it to Mission Island!]. After we parked, we saw this sign pointing the way, yet this Wetland area is almost indiscernible from the road. Someone, however, has recently driven around the grounds in a big truck with big tires, mucking up and rutting the paths, and driving over, or should I say, driving down 2 concrete benches, as they were dumped over and broken. You'd need a machine to do that. They weigh a ton. I guess some folks just like to wreck anything in their path.

Many, many spring migrants were arriving as we stood on the banks of the river. Overhead, a flock of cormorants. They were on their way south, towards Mission Island. There were many goldeneyes, mergansers, mallards, Canada geese, and gulls calling out, swimming about, resting on the shore, searching for mates, poking in the dried grasses. A bird sanctuary. A sweet song sparrow called out from a tree behind us. I thought I heard a red-winged blackbird in the distance.

a pair of Canada geese and what I think is a Lesser Scaup, but I'm not 100% sure yet. This is the first time I've seen a duck like this. It was a small compact duck and had a white bill, a gray body with a soft vague herringbone pattern, a glossy black head, and two white patches under its tail.

pollution streaming by. The waterfront along the Kaministiquia River has been "developed" for more than a 150 years as an industrial ....wasteland. Thank goodness for the groups that are working to clean up these sites of destruction caused by capitalist "development". In Thunder Bay the task is huge. Our waterfront is littered with industry, abandoned industry, railway right of way, pollution, garbage. There are very few public access sites to Lake Superior that isn't owned by industry or private individuals or groups. That's why the "development" of the downtown marina is burning a hole in my heart....

A piece of a pier or a loading dock or ...? It is before concrete pilings as this mammoth chunk of pillar is made of many irregular-shaped stones placed together. It is lying on its side on the river bank. It would make a great table for giants.

A close up of its face. Orange lichen is growing on the surfaces of many of the old blocks of stone~granite~blocks. There are many stone chunks lying helter-skelter on the shore. A sign by the viewing platform says that there was an elevator in this location in days gone by.

this beautiful pink granite pillar was left behind after industry abandoned this spot. This pillar is absolutely gorgeous; a work of art yet it is lying carelessly, as if it weren't as regal as it is.

"Wow!" I called out to my sister as I picked my way carefully along the stones and driftwood. "Look at this pink granite pillar! It would be perfect for my garden! ...

of course, there's no way of bringing it home. It must weigh a ton. At least. I wonder what its original purpose was? It would make a stunning standing stone. The folks in charge of this Wetland should find it a place; it's a memorial stone.

camouflage reflection. A pair of geese come ashore to look for a nesting spot.


marja-leena said...

Love these photos, and that pink stone pillar is indeed worthy of being set up as a special standing stone.

Philosophichick said...

I can't get over the gorgeous purple light from the sun! Did you know that purple means wisdom, healing and royalty? and all I can think about is the presence of God, our creator or whoever your spirit believes on.
Amazing work. Good job my friend!