This is the first part in a two-part Field Notes entry written by two authors. I’ll take the first part, my son Saul the second. It wasn’t my intention to put up Field Notes again so soon, but this story is just too good to wait for.
July 11, 2009. As I take Coyote Way into Crossfire, I find its coyote gate keep reduced to little more than a fur doormat. The carcass’s light bones seem to be floating away downhill. Many are missing. So that took, what? A little over three months? Three months for decomposition to the point of fur and bleached bone.
We’ve had a run of hot weather, so I’m curious about how the beaver ponds in Crossfire are faring, especially the last one located along my route. Around this time last year, that pond dried up completely. Dozens of small fish locked in between its dams died in the mud as its last pocket of creek water turned inside out, summer’s heat having emptied it of its currency.
As I approach the dam, I can see the creek bed below it has run dry. That means there’s no flow out of the dam. That probably means €¦ yes, the pond is empty.
But walking to the bank and visually following the curve of the muddy pond bottom to its lowest point, I discover a puddle, three feet long and two feet wide, sunk in a crease. Its murky, greenish-brown surface roils. Desperate fish, I think, trapped in the last shreds of water heating up fast in the rising morning temperatures, losing oxygen, losing volume. Continue reading “Field Notes #7, pt. one”