Monday, July 4, 2016


They removed Little Falls dam on the Willow River last year which means for a few years the Willow River will flow free through what has been Little Falls Lake.  I really wanted to see what the river is like so today I went to check it out.

I started at the site of the old dam.  The absence of a Lake hasn't driven away the masses.  There were people everywhere at the park.
 Dam Son.
 People swimming.
 People swimming and fishing.
 People looking.
 Babes in the lower right corner.  I almost worked up the courage to talk to them before I remembered that I was in full fly fishing regalia.  They would probably think I was a dork.
 Once there was a wall of steel and concrete that held the waters back.
 I started upstream.
 A rock wall on the bank,
 A river.
 An ancient can of SHASTA.
 A little wide here.  It was really mucky too when I tried to walk on the banks but the middle of the river was solid.
 A spring flowed in.
 A lot of spring seepage on the opposite bank as well.
 A river.
 Some other dudes came down to check it out.
 A view up to the beach area.
 An old tire and a stump.
 If I walked way up on the banks there was a certain type of plant that was 5 feet tall as far as the eye could see.
 Looking back at the dang.  I mean dam.
 A river.
 The Willow River.
 A nice riffle.
 A closer look.
 Sandy Beach.
 Looking back.
 A cool plant.
 Another shot.
 A nice stretch.
 The swallows are already nesting in the mud banks.
 Water flowing over rocks.
 It was a nice day for a walk.
 This tree was once on the shore of a lake.  Now it is close to a river.
 I actually caught a Rainbow.
 I was so happy.
 Beautiful place.
 I could hear the falls from here.
 And a Creek Chub.
 Closer to the falls.
 Flip flops.
 Closer to the falls.
 The falls.  There were many people swimming at the base of the falls.
 A deer I spotted on the way back.  She had about seven friends with her.
 Another nice view.  This had been underwater for a long time until last year.
 Usually you would be looking out on a lake from this vantage point.  Just a grassland now with a river running through it.
 The old boat landing.
 Can't launch here.
 A map.
 This picnic table used to be on the shore of a lake.
 Children used to swim at this beach.
 Here is the view now.
Whenever I think about dams I think about the verse from, "The Highwaymen" where he sings about being a dam builder.

"I was a dam builder
Across the river deep and wide
Where steel and water did collide
A place called Boulder on the wild Colorado
I slipped and fell into the wet concrete below
They buried me in that great tomb that knows no sound
But I am still around"

It's one of my favorite songs.  Have a listen.
It was a good day to take a walk along the Willow.

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