As we’ve been skiing and snowshoeing these last few weeks, we’ve been able to see solid evidence of deer: deer tracks! We’ve seen enough deer year round and plenty of droppings and certainly heard the gunshots in November, but tracks in the snow show us how close the deer have come, how many there are, and some of their trails.
As the snow gets deeper, it turns out the deer like our trails!
Not knowing which way to go, I follow the deer trail.
And after persisting on this trail
I came out into this opening and bedding area.
Because I was so lucky to have a semester off from teaching, I hung around Basin Pond, paddling and walking the trails daily.
Besides the usual garden projects, I harvested cranberries, lavender, and pine cones! I decided I would make all my Christmas presents!
Although it didn’t prove to be cheaper, my family all enjoyed the pine cone wreaths, cranberry infusions, and homemade lavender lotions and lip balms. I enjoyed the satisfaction of working with my hands and feeling the onset of Christmas a month early when I was baking pine cones and setting vinegar bottles to infuse. Stay tuned for Basin Pond Gifts next year – fa la la la la!
The clouds have sorted themselves out, and the sun has taken over. It is the end of a long and rewarding day at Basin Pond. Today, we had our first clients and SUP adventurists come visit us here at the pond. It was a family of 8, turns out they were from. . . The County! Of course they were! (Ray and I are both from The County!) After a cup of coffee and hitting it off immediately, 6 of them walked the Tamarack Trail to the dock, and 2 came with me down the Pine Grove trail to launch kayaks. The family was 3 sisters and a brother,and the brother’s family with 3 fun teenagers who were game to try something new.
Basin Pond is a great place for beginning paddlers, as the wind never gets going too crazily,and it’s small enough to traverse and explore. This particular morning, the weather was stellar: the sun was sparkling on the water, and a slight breeze kept the horseflies away. It was fun to paddle and swim, switching boats and boards, and be part of this family’s memory in the making. Ray and I feel very lucky to have landed in this beautiful and magical place; it’s nice to be able to share it with other people.
We’re fascinated and awed by how the beavers have shaped this landscape. When on or along the water, it’s hard to find places that show no evidence of their work.
One of their recent projects is a small dam on a stream that skirts our property. A few weeks ago, curious about their level of commitment to this small dam, I removed a few sticks from the top. I returned a few days later to find — as is usually the case — those tireless nightworkers had only become more inspired by my minor provocation. They had shored up the top of the dam and then some.
Since the dam is near a walking trail we use to access the pond, I was concerned that the walking trail could eventually become flooded out if they built the dam up higher. A few minutes of online research revealed a possible solution,: a ten foot length of perforated pvc pipe with screening on each end. Some of the sources suggested the pipe should extend 20 feet back from the dam and that upstream end should be caged off to prevent the beavers from blocking it, but I decided to go with the simpler solution for now.