Brad's Blog
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Sept. 1
    We joined the Spirit Lake Property Owners group this year, dedicated to preserving the quality of our lake...  One of the perqs of membership is getting a tour of the Inland Empire Paper Company land which surrounds Spirit and Twin Lakes...  Most of the time was spent in the back seat of a dusty windowed van, but when we got out we learned about their serious stewardship efforts, in spite of the land looking clear cut...   Both sets of lakes have issues with the water feeding them, having had the stream beds straightened for logging reasons 100 years ago.  Just above both lakes marsh turns to thick grassland, and cattle have grazed there and contributed to water quality decline...  Our last stop at the Easterday ranch on Twin Lakes showed how volunteers fenced off most of a mile of creekbed from the cows, and planted trees which are already growing vigorously, which will shade and cool the water making it better trout habitat... At that location I took this picture, not of the creek, but of the fire hazed tree covered hills making some of the 100,000 acres of timber land we toured:


Sept. 19
The week after the last posting was filled with smoke, then I made a getaway visit to my family in Minnesota, which I'm just back from.  The weather turned totally while I was gone, including the first rain in nearly 3 months, snow in the mountains, and many of the regional forest fires being naturally shut down...  The rain is still here today, as it was on and off across the plains...

I took S.D. 34 east from Sturgis, where Black Butte is prominent to the north...  This highway is generally empty of traffic, and very relaxing to drive...

On the way back I stopped at my brother's cabin up a mountain by Deadwood S.D. and the clouds and trees were dancing...


I think this is the Tobacco Root range along I 90 in Montana, taken today, with fresh snow (also snowing in places)...  I'm pretty sure there's no better drive along a freeway than the view from Livingston to Bozeman of the mountains which are south of Yellowstone...  (Although the peaks along Snowqualmie Pass in Washington state are lovely as well)


Using the illustration camera mode, I took a few artsy snapshots of life in the fast lane...


This is a slightly washed out view of an abandoned farm in western S.D. taken while driving...  I think it's my favorite, evoking Andrew Wyeth and S.D.'s own Harvey Dunn...

Sept. 26

In 2011 I took this photo of a weird blob in the Mill Pond.  Last month we found more of them, and I noticed an article on Magnificent Bryozoans invading the Northwest US.  There was a link to report sightings, which I used, and heard back today from a researcher requesting a photo if possible, so I looked it up on the blog... Turns out it's a nonvertebrate animal existing in colonies...   https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phylactolaemata




Books read and other media of note
Collared by David Rosenfeld.  Another good dog/lawyer mystery.



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