Sunday, April 3, 2016

The Things You'll Find

The weather said "showers". It rained all day. Sunday wasn't going to be much better with raw wind and snow showers forecast. I think I chose the more comfortable of the two days.

Visit #1008, Saturday 2 April 16, 9:15AM-12:15PM, 5.6 miles.
Temps in the 50's, rain.

Despite the rain, the weather wasn't that bad if you dressed correctly. Unfortunately, my occasional co-volunteer wasn't dressed correctly.

I wanted to remove the tree trunk I discovered last week placed across the Yellow Trail. With Paul joining me this week, I didn't have to pack any heavy tools as I figured the two of us could pull the log off the trail.

We started on the road and entered the trails at the south end of Merimere Reservoir. One of the things I found was the lock to the gate has been cut for the second time this year, the last time being in January.

This happens at least 3 times a year. You would think the City of Meriden would construct a tamper-resistant padlock, much like this photo I pulled off the internet.

I wanted to provide a more local example but this week's weather denied me the opportunity to photograph it. Maybe next week. My point is, there are many ways to protect the lock from boltcutters and the above example is just one of them.

While looking on the internet for photos of tamper-proof padlocks, I found this negative review of Hubbard Park. What stung me is her comment that "the paths are littered". I thought I did a pretty good job. Maybe she was just in a bitter mood because of the broken window...

As I continued to surf, I also found a link to a web site describing Hubbard Park as a potential place for gays to cruise and find "discrete" spots to engage in...  In the past I'd heard rumors it was an open secret that Hubbard Park was known place for this kind of activity. I guess it's no longer a rumor.

Just beyond the gate, we found someone unfortunately destroyed a letterbox and left the remains.

Paul and I arrived at the tree trunk which needed clearing from the Yellow Trail.

I rigged a comealong strap to it and we pulled the log into the woods.

Done deal.

During a mountain bike ride in the park last week, I discovered another small tree which had fallen across the trail under specious circumstances. That foreknowledge came in handy as I brought a bow saw along this week to remove the top of the tree.

It was at this point that Paul found he was not dressed properly for the weather and decided to call it a day. He carried his bag of trash back to the park and left it next to my car.

I hiked the trails up to West Peak, then walked the road down and back to the park, collecting trash along the way.

My Find of the Week was this jug taped to a birch tree, presumably to collect the sap. To my credit, I actually spied this jug through roughly 100 feet of trees. Not bad.

I had previously found these setups on the opposite side of the road in April of 2014. I removed the jug from the tree and put it in my bag.

I took the road all the way back to the parking lot, cleaning up the roadside as I went. deposited all that Paul and I found this week, in the trash can at the playscape, then went home to dry out.

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