We called ourselves the “River Rats”. With our Blue Dolphin canoe loaded with a chainsaw, pruning saw, rake and garbage bags, we were determined to make the Bark River from Hartland to Lake Nagawicka navigable for canoes and litter free. Mark Mamerow and I took many work trips down the Bark and, after 7 years, its a really nice paddle. In his new book “The Bark River Chronicles – Stories from a Wisconsin Watershed”, Milton J. Bates describes our stretch of the Bark River in Chapter 5. Mr. Bates tells the story of The Hartland Marsh in great detail and even mentions Pati and I. Although he doesn’t mention Mark by name, he does comment on the great improvements to the river in this stretch since his last visit in the 1990s. Thanks Mark!
Check out About Paul for more info about the Hartland Marsh project. Here is a map of the Bark River in the Hartland Marsh area.
That being said, it was great to connect with Mark again today as we burned 50 more piles at the Scuppernong Springs. The morning was crisp and cold.
Just beyond the row of 12 brush piles you can see below is a remnant of a sedge meadow.
Our DNR friends Don and Amanda gave us a huge bag of seeds, with over 20 varieties suitable for a Wet Mesic Prairie setting, that we plan to sow in the area around the Indian Springs and in other locations. The transition from Buckthorn thicket to natural prairie or wetland includes a lot of steps and burning the brush piles is one of my favorites.
We lit another dozen piles farther down the outflow channel of the Indian Springs, closer to where it joins the Scuppernong River.
The conditions were perfect so we moved to the West side of the Indian Campground Sand Dune and lit another bunch of piles. By 11:00am we had 50 piles started and we began the mop up process.
Snow started falling around 4:00pm and it was coming down pretty good by the time I left. Since there wasn’t much of a sunset today, here is a great shot taken by Tighe House a couple weeks ago.
See you at the Springs!