Along the Lakeshore: Dec. 11

A large flight of ducks, mostly scaup and a few ring-necks and goldeneyes, arrived last week and hung around in the strong winds here. They ranged around for three or four days, then suddenly departed for southerly locales.

The lake level is rising, but the good news is that the city is now running the creek to the top of the banks full-time. This illustrates clearly that they are unable or unwilling to arrive at a modulated flow rate. I do not think that it is out of concern for the beach sand deposits downstream.

The flow rates from Lake Mead (Boulder Dam) are varied seasonally to rearrange sand deposits in such a fashion as to match the natural rhythms of the flow of the Colorado River. The purpose of this is to maintain the normal beaches and dissuade growth that could alter the shore features through the Grand Canyon.

Sue and I visited our son Jay in Stonington, Conn. for the week of Thanksgiving. His daughter Lisa, a freshman at Stonington High School, plays the French horn in the concert band and a mellow horn with the marching band. This motivated us to buy reduced-price advance-sale tickets for the annual Stonington versus Westerly, R.I. football game.

This game is claimed to be the longest continuous rivalry in the United States, lasting from 1911 to the present. Westerly is across the bridge that separates Connecticut and Rhode Island and it was sort of expected that we would go to the game at 10 a.m. Thanksgiving morning. We knew it would be nasty and brought some long johns to assist our survival.

It was a gloriously sunny morning with very strong winds off the water flowing down the field and the temperatures were in the high 20s. The stands were jammed and every parking area was utilized. The Stonington police had six cars and lots of manpower on the scene to keep things in order.

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