Thursday, April 16, 2009

Tentative signs of Spring

Morris Island Conservation Area, April 2009

Last weekend, I went out to the Morris Island Conservation Area, about 45 minutes west of Ottawa along the Ottawa River.  Although daytime temperatures have been steadily rising, it's still getting below freezing at night, so I wasn't too surprised to see that Spring seems to be quite tentative in the conservation area.  However, I was quite surprised to see the amount if ice still present along the river.

 Detail of the ice on the river, April 2009

The water levels on the river were very low -- I guess that the levels are controlled by the nearby hydro-electric dam.  This no doubt affects the remaining ice.  Without the high water levels to flush out the ice, it seems to sit around and melt more slowly with the sun and daytime temperatures.  You could hear the ice crack as the sun shone.

Despite the ice, just a few meters into the forest, you could see the very beginnings of spring growth -- just a hint of green starting to appear in the muck of the snow melt.

Forest meltwater, April 2009

As the sun gets warmer this week, the hint of green in the photograph should get much thicker, and the trees will begin to flower.  It's time for spring -- I can't wait!

. . . Rob Williams