Sunday, December 28, 2014

Busy During The Holidays

Friday dawned unseasonably glorious for December. Sunday, not so nice.

Visit #922, Friday 26 December 14, 7:20-10:10AM, 3.8 miles.
Temps in the 30's, rising quickly to the high 40's, sunny.

Visit #923, Saturday 27 December 14, 7:20-10:10AM, 2.0 miles.
Temps in the 30's, rising to the low 50's, sunny.

Visit #924, Sunday 28 December 14, 7:20-10:10AM, 4.2 miles.
Temps in the low 40's, with a raw, intermittent light rain.

The holidays always mean extra time off from work; no better time to catch up on my projects in Hubbard Park.

On Friday I continued my work trimming the road side toward Castle Craig. This time I used only hand tools and made a fair amount of progress. You can see in the photo some of the brush surrounding the guardrail which has to go. I plan on returning with my chainsaw to remove the larger growth.

Of course, enroute from the park to the north end of Merimere Reservoir to work, I picked up trash. Along the way I found this sign which must belong to the project in progress on the I-691 overpass which divides the park. The sign somehow found it's way into the brook.

At the end of Friday's work I dropped of the trash I'd collected.

Saturday was my annual cleanup of the hillside behind the playscape, bordering I-691. People park their cars along the fence and think it's okay to toss their trash over the fence where presumably it becomes invisible. Actually, it becomes an eyesore-like THIS kind of eyesore:

How bad is it? Take a look at what I gathered in 3 hours:

Along the way I came across my Condom of the Week:

I also found Guillermo's ATM receipt. If he's inconsiderate enough to toss his receipt on the ground in Hubbard Park, then he deserves his account balance be made public information.

In the process of cleaning up the hillside, I began to wonder why sound abatement barriers were never erected to isolate Hubbard Park from highway traffic noise. I think it would substantially add to visitors' enjoyment of the park, particularly near the playscape. I'm not just thinking of the area in the photo below, but also the land to the left, directly in-line with Mirror Lake. In fact, ideally the entire length of Hubbard Park would be separated from the highway for maximum benefit. Since that distance appears to be less than 3000ft., the cost would be well under the $1.5 million dollars/mile my casual internet surfing says it would cost. I e-mailed my suggestion to all of the Meriden city councilors in the hopes it gains some traction. I'm sure it's something that doesn't happen overnight, but it would be a nice, long term goal.

Anyway, to cap off my holiday weekend, I returned to Hubbard Park on Sunday morning to continue trimming the road side toward Castle Craig. The day dawned not nearly as nice as Friday. Castle Craig was nowhere to be seen.

At least I had the road to myself.

Since Friday, each time I walked the road to and from the north end of Merimere Reservoir, I'd pass this branch which had fallen into the road. Rather than let the City of Meriden Parks Department contend with it, I used my tools at hand and took care of it myself.

I returned to the park and added my bag of trash to the long line and ended a productive holiday weekend.

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