The most pressing chore was to go up to the headgate of the Little Jessie ditch and see why there wasn't much water coming down it. Bob was taking the Cat and Thomas and I were to follow him on the 4 wheeler. The other boys were going to town to buy supplies for their camp out later that day. Thomas and I lasted behind the 2 or 3 mile an hour Cat just past the first ditch and then went around him so we could do a little walking around and exploring on the way up. We checked out the Thinking Rock and the big washout and then cruised around looking for cool camp sights. We continued on up the mountain and did some more exploring (OK--I kind of forgot where the headgate was so we did a lot of walking up the ditch.) With so many trees going down from pine beetle damage we had to go off the trail to get around them. Bob just pushed them aside with his big play toy! One tree was way too big so he had to go around it, too.
Thomas heads up the hill to the Thinking Rock
Looking down on the ditch and then the river
Thomas stands on the edge of the headgate with the river behind him
We finally reached the headgate and discovered someone must have been messing with it and pushed it clear shut! There must be some crazies running around in the remote parts of the forest is all I've got to say. Bob showed Thomas what to do and we got it jacked up (it's an old wooden one with no wheels to turn just leverage!)
Bob explains to us how the headgate works.
It's an oldie!
Bob is still giving us instructions!
The river is running higher than Bob has ever seen it in all the years he has been up there. I took pictures but with the roaring of the water it was much more impressive!
The Beaver Creek is really roaring.
We hiked back up to the vehicles and I walked along the top of the ridge and checked for leaks in the ditch. There was one suspicious place so we walked down to the weir so we could cross it and go back up to the leaky place to fix it.
Coming up the hill from the headgate. Notice all the beetle kill.
I love this picture! The trees aren't dead and they smell divine! That is the canyon going up to Aqua Fria in the background. Still lots of snow up there.
When we got to the weir, we discovered we had opened the gate too much and so Thomas and I walked back up to the headgate and lowered it by 1 board.
Thomas is closing down the headgate a little
That was enough for the water not to go over the top of the leaky part so we finally could come back home. It was such a gorgeous day we just enjoyed it to the hilt! One sour note--I killed 3 big mosquitoes filled with my blood! This is way too early for those pests!
Here comes the Cat. Notice the dead tree I'm standing near and the live little ones along the trail
Looking over the job. The river roars on down.
The Cat is headed home. He about wiped out the fence in the foreground as he came through but it made it unhurt.
Speaking of irrigating, today I decided it was time to go pick rhubarb. I set out walking (since I really need the exercise and I wanted to take some pictures along the way). I had not even got out of the driveway and I noticed a lot of water had been running down our road cutting a little trench. I'd never seen this before so I went back and got Bob. The water has been so high the last few days that the ditch closest to our road went way out of its banks and ran down the road. It had gone down enough that it was no longer running over, but we decided to go on up and check out some more ditches. Luckily I brought the camera with me and took some pictures of springtime around here! The ditches were doing OK so it was an enjoyable ride!
Bob's doing a little irrigating
A question for the Manville kids. Where is this? What is the building in the background?
Look at that blue sky!
Kathi and Danny, I hope one of those isn't "your tree!"
We drove around and couldn't see the writing anywhere so I hope we just didn't know where to look.
More about my rhubarb adventure, fishing, and Springtime in the Rockies in later blogs.