Have you ever had the opportunity to really watch a river change? It is one of the many wonders of local phenology. Subtle, day to day, following the seasons.
Gone are the days of watching the water striders and boatman dance over the clear, still morning water. Here come the days of bracing oneself against the cold moisture blown off the river by the fierce winds. Gone are the days of mostly clear, cool water, only sediment, fish and macroinvertebrates. Next come the days of green, soupy, warm – as compared to the air temperature – water; mostly leaves, dead sticks and heavy sediment. Gone are the back channels teeming with life among the high water pools. Then comes the low water level: beaches dried and uncovered for the first time, former pools now chocked full of dead leaves.
Do not fear, for these days will not last long. White cold dense flakes are beginning to fall as winter surrounds us. Bring on the snow and the cold of January, for it means the beginning of another great year on the river!