Sunday, July 13, 2014

Journalist Poseur

 South Mountain and Meriden as viewed from the Blue Trail high above Merimere Reservoir.

Visit #882, Monday 7 July 14, 6:40-8:20PM, 3.1 miles.
Temps in the 80's, sunny and very humid.

Visit #883, Saturday 12 July 14, 5:30-8:30PM, 5.3 miles.
Temps in the 80's, slight humidity, disappearing with a strong evening breeze.

On Monday I wanted to catch up on some trail maintenance so I stopped by in the evening with my lopping shears and trimmed back some trail foliage in various spots, picking up trash as I traveled.

Sad to say, one of the flags on the I-691 walkbridge was ripped, so I removed it.

It was near dark when I finished.

During the overnight storm of 3/4 July, the hillside surrounding Merimere Reservoir was subject to a microburst. Walking the road to Castle Craig and seeing the damage up close was impressive. Saturday's agenda was to play news photographer and capture the scene by traveling the Blue Trail high above Merimere Reservoir, and presenting it for all of you to see.

I started on the Percival Park Road heading north. I picked up a truck tire sidewall, too large for my bag. I dropped it off at the water treatment facility.

When I reached the area where the microburst caused its damage, I found trash which must have been unearthed by the crews clearing the road. There was enough to leave my first bag of trash.

Just passed Echo Point, there was an urgent "knock at the back door" ;-) and I had this sudden need to "fill out some paperwork". I would have won an Oscar had I been in the movie "Blazing Saddles".

I ducked into a nearby abandoned trail and discovered someone had used it as a campsite. I've found blankets like this before in various spots in Hubbard Park. It seems like the park is a popular place for those on the margins of Meriden's society to seek respite.

From the remains of the campsite, I'd say this particular camper had a heroin problem.

I cleaned up the area but the blanket was too large to carry. So, I deposited the blanket along with a bag of trash at the north end of Merimere Reservoir. I'll contact the Meriden Parks Department to pick the various bags and whatnot I left at the 2 locations.

Once I picked up the Blue Trail, I discovered a few trees had fallen across in the aftermath of Hurricane Arthur. I plan on returning soon to remove them. I seldom visit this trail because it sees little use from a demographic likely to litter. This was a good opportunity to trim back the foliage as I went to maintain it, which I did with my loppers.

High up on the ridge, I was able to get a better view of the damage caused by the microburst. Using your web browser, you should be able to click on and zoom in on the images to get a closer view of the denuded and felled trees. You may have to right-click on the photo to do so.

Once at the top, I took a most direct route back to the park and deposited my last bag of trash.

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