Friday, November 2, 2012


WATERWORKS Column by Gordon Prickett for the 11/7/2012 Aitkin Independent Age CLEAN WATER AGAIN It was late in the season when the water on our lake began to clear up. A final transparency reading with a white Secchi Disk at the center of the lake was just about back to normal for October. What a change from a few months ago when sediment and algae from flooding and runoff in June had colored the water brown and green. TAKING IN THE DOCK Snow birds have flown or are now planning their departures. I am one of the last hold outs on the lake to haul in his fishing boat and canoe. But finally it is time. The hose connected to the lake pump freezes up. Cold winds discourage leisurely paddling. And most of the hardwoods have dropped their leaves to end the panorama of color everywhere. So we unhook the ramp and roll in the dock to its winter resting place on the lake bank. It is an in-between time. Birdbaths and small ponds are skinned over with ice, but lake ice for skating and fishing is weeks away. A “regular” winter with plenty of snow and thick ice will be welcomed by the year-round people and by merchants who look forward to serving snowmobilers and ATV trail riders. PLANNING FOR 2013 Lake Associations have compared programs, speakers, and ideas for activating their residents at recent ACLARA (coalition) meetings, with an eye to preparing for their activities in the new year. A “Paddle Around the Lake” with kayaks and canoes has followed the Fourth of July Boat Parade a few days later on Nord Lake. An updated report from DNR Fisheries for each lake has been a favorite program with fishermen at several lake associations. Master Gardeners have given several excellent presentations for shoreland vegetation management. With twenty members of the Aitkin County Lakes And Rivers Association, we can provide a source of ideas for what may appeal to cabin people from a lake association.