Yesterday, a walk to the Arkansas River reminded me that water is life – that is, unless you’re a rock, and your crystalline life blood moves verrry slowly.
I stood on the railroad bridge overlooking the river. There, before my eyes, was a new rivulet: water was running around the south side of the rock bar for the first time.
Next I checked out the conifers in the neighborhood. The gorgeous ponderosas and Douglas fir trees with their roots buried in the river bank, are happy campers. The first picture is a close up of a cone-laden ponderosa. (The cones are from last year).
A close-up of a Douglas fir shows its signature cones with little protruding “tongues.”
Ponderosa and Douglas fir prefer a wetter environment than the pinon and juniper. Below, a picture of a pinon, which lives on the river rim.
And a lush, furry, blueish juniper, below. These two will grow in dry, nutrient poor soils. But here, next to the river, they have richer soil and more water.
You find all four conifers growing practically on top of one another down the river corridor. Whereas, away from the river, near my house, we have three ponderosas, one juniper, and many pinons on our land. But no Douglas firs. Water is what brings them all together.
Feeling dry creatively, physically and spiritually, I need to be near running water to revive. I sat at river level for awhile, drinking it all in. A wild duck flew right past me, heading upstream, faster than I could turn on my camera.
When water is released in May from Clear Creek Reservoir and other impoundments to the north, our river may flow bank-to-bank for a while. But this is the dryest Colorado in ten years. Our rafting season will be short.
Meanwhile, I’m enjoying the spring-green along the Arkansas River’s bank.