Saturday, September 17, 2011

Lake Eufala

This past week the kids and I went with Terri and "E" on an overnight field trip to see some different landforms and ecosystems.  (Which is just a fancy way of saying that we went to see some cool nature stuff.)  Since there was so much to see at both the lake and Robber's Cave, I'm going to do them as two separate posts.

After weeks and months of very little rain, the weather decided to take a turn on the very day we left on our field trip.  Because of this, we spent most of the afternoon and evening indoors at Terri's parents' house on Lake Eufala.  However, even that provided a good bit of amusement for us because they are grandparents and have "grandparent" toys for the kids.  (Incidentally, I also go a great game of Texas Canasta out of it.)

Connor's favorite thing by far was the dress-up shoes.  And yes, I'm aware that someday he'll probably be mad at me for posting these pictures. I'll willing to risk it.

"E" had a great time being a four-legged animal friend with her ears and a tail.  Connor loves playing pretend with her - they are an unlikely pair of buddies but they have a great time!  She was, however, very concerned that Connor was playing with "girl toys".  Especially her old girl toys.

After dinner we went for a walk down by the lake.  It's unusually low right now because of the drought, and while I'm not happy about the lack of rain, it afforded us some great sights.  We got to walk along a beach that is usually underwater.

See the top of that tree on the left?  That was pretty close to the water's edge when we were here last summer (2010).

The black line that you see on the rocks here is the usual water line.

Olivia and Kelsey couldn't resist a run along the hard packed sand at the water's edge.

As I looked through the pictures after I got home, I realized that Connor had turned litterbug on me.  Here he is playing in the sand next to a old soda can.

I apparently caught him red-handed picking up the can.  (Note: I cropped this picture and the next - he wasn't the main thing I was photographing.)

And then he waved goodbye after he stuck it in the water.  I have other pictures of it floating further "out to sea", too!  That little stinker.

We saw a few really nifty things, such as a large bird's tracks.  You can see the girls comparing their hand size to the bird track.

We also saw these strange patterns of ridges in the sand that looked like an animal had been burrowing just underneath the surface.  Can you see the design in the sand?

One of my personal favorites was the dead bird(?) skeleton.

Or maybe the dead fish...
 Both were a little gross, but very interesting!

A few other tidbits we found:

A clam shell

An old tire buried in the sand:

A huge bird feather:

A root growing into the lake from at one of the trees.  You can see in the last picture just how far away the trees actually are from the lake!

Old tree stumps or something coming out of the water (note Olivia's expression in this one):

And last but not least, a LOT of blue-green algae.  It was in the water...

...and out.

 We also noticed in a number of areas that there was a greenish level of sand under the top level and before you got to the darker level underneath.  Can you see it here?

There have been warnings out for several weeks about the toxic levels of blue-green algae in areas of Lake Eufala for several weeks now.  Needless to say, the kids had to thoroughly wash their hands when we got back to the house.

Even though it was chilly and overcast, we had a great walk!
Though some of us preferred to dance:

On a closing note, do  you see how I took Maddox outside?

I didn't realize it was quite that chilly and windy.  I'm just praying he doesn't get a cold or something.  If he does, I'm going to get a big, fat "I-told-you-so" from Ben.  And I'll probably deserve it.

No comments: