Tuesday, May 17, 2011

time to flood?

Just got a report for water and boating conditions on the Swan River, the Wild Mile to be exact. FAST! And with water likely to continue rising until the Whitewater Fest, it could be crazy. I remember a number of years ago when conditions were similar, and the spillover dam got bombarded with a load of down timber that broke thru the upper barricade and down over the dam. Those in the water were in dire peril, but no one that I know of got hurt. That is a pretty wild section anyway, so typically only top-notch boaters go there, but this year could be one of those years people get scared.

A birdie told me plowing on the Going to the Sun road is going very slowly, with little expectation of an opening in June. This has only happened once or twice in the past. Apparently, the road crew does not really read the avalanche report, but goes on older, much more scientific reports. Like “the weather will be warm and sunny this afternoon”. That means certain avalanche conditions. But not really until “this afternoon”. Think they could maybe get something done by noon or one? The road crews are still more likely to trust “spotters” than forecasts. A spotter literally sits below the workers and stares all day at known avy paths. If something happens, he yells out and calls quickly into his radio. Something like this might be heard, “oh shit, cover your head and take a big breathe, we’re both about to get…..” I love old school.

So biking has been great. Plenty of water on most trails in puddles and over full wetlands to help keep the dogs cool. The Whitefish Trail is in great shape, and sounds like the initial work is just about to begin for new trail this summer. I would guess we would have another 5 miles by August. A good early season ride for some real mountain feel is Beardance down south of Bigfork. Should be ready but no word yet.

And for those of you who have not started your garden yet, it is time. It is a late year, and no reason to despair if you are not in the ground yet. There is still plenty of time to get everything in. For more info, I now have a website for my gardening business, www.millerstillers.com . I plan to do a discussion page, next on my morning agenda, to talk about things to do. Take a look and get in the dirt and grow some of your own food or make your home more beautiful.

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