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Archive for May, 2009

Topsfield, Maine

Posted by graywacke on May 30, 2009

First timer? In this (hopefully) once-a-day blog, I have my computer select a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48). I call this “landing.” I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town I land near. I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is and what the various numbers and abbreviations mean), please see “About Landing,” (and “Abbreviations” and “Cryptic Numbers”) above.

Dan – Well, I’ve landed in a state that has been US for as long as I can remember . . . ME: 17/20; 6/10; 13; 159.6.

Maine has been US well before landing 655, when I started keeping hard-copy data sheets that show the individual Scores for each state (I used to print out a copy every 5 landings; now it’s every 10 landings). Anyway, back on landing 655, Maine’s Score was -7, which is solidly USer.   But it’s now -2 (landing 1730), so it’s heading a little towards PS-land.

For reference, Texas is now obscenely US (-19), followed by FL (-8).   Crazily, back on landing 655, ID was the most OS state at -13.  This is contrary to the expected statistical trend, which would have the score of the most OS state steadily decreasing . . .

Anyway, here’s my landing map, showing my proximity to the Canadian border:

landing

And a broader view:

topsfield

Actually, the above map makes the U.S. look like an island (or, at least a peninsula)!!   Here’s a broader view of my landing map, which gives you a better feel for the relationship between my landing & Canada.  Note that my landing is N45 / W67:

landing2

I landed in the watershed of a new river, the St. Croix.  Now it just so happens that the St. Croix forms part of the international boundary between ME & Canada.   Here’s a picture of the river (too bad that guy on the kayak is blocking part of the view):

st_croix_1

Here’s a map of the St. Croix River watershed:

Stcroixrivermapmaine

The St. Croix defines the boundary south of the two large lakes.  North of the series of lakes is a stream called “Monument Brook.” You’ll note that north of Boundary Brook, the border becomes a straight line.  At the southern terminus of that line is – you guessed it – a monument.  Thus, Monument Brook.  Also, on the U.S. side of the border, there is a Monument Road that heads over towards the monument. On the Canadian side, there is not only a Monument Road, but a small town called Monument.

So, this monument is apparently a pretty big deal. I Googled and Googled, but couldn’t find much out about the monument per se (and certainly no picture).   But just for the heck of it, I went to Google Earth. Here’s what I found:

boundary marker

This is really very cool!!! Y ou’ll note the very straight N-S clearing in the upper middle part of the photo.  That’s the border.  At the southern end of that line is a faint white dot.  OK, so maybe I wouldn’t bet my life on it, but I certainly believe that that must be the monument itself!!  South of that point, the boundary is defined by Monument Brook, which is apparent on the photo.

Of course, Google Earth can show the border on the aerial photo, but unfortunately, it’s inaccurately offset to the east by a couple of hundred feet, so it makes the whole picture confusing (although by transposing the border to line up with the N-S clearing, it would place the end of the straight line segment right at the assumed monument location).

Anyway, I landed near Topsfield, about which I could find very little, except this photo of the Topsfield volunteer fire station:

tops

KS

Greg

© 2009 A Landing A Day

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Mill Creek and Huttonsville, West Virginia

Posted by graywacke on May 28, 2009

First timer? In this (hopefully) once-a-day blog, I have my computer select a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48). I call this “landing.” I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town I land near. I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is and what the various numbers and abbreviations mean), please see “About Landing,” (and “Abbreviations” and “Cryptic Numbers”) above.

Dan – Well, a little hiccup here, as I’ve squandered two chances for a new record low Score (and in fact have pushed my Score back above 160). Today I landed in a marginal OSer, pushing it deeper into OS-land . . . WV; 16/14; 6/10; 12; 160.3.

Interesting thing about WV. My initial landing in WV was landing 496. This made WV the last “major” state for me to land in. (Teeny states that hadn’t been landed in by landing 496 include NJ (hit just a few days later at landing 503); RI (landing 722); VT (landing 814); and DE (haven’t landed there yet). Before my initial WV landing, I had landed in NH (early on, at landing 68).

Anyway, as you might imagine, WV was way US for quite a while. But, I kept on landing in WV at an OSer pace, and by landing 1052, WV had become a PSer, and has since inched its way into OS-land. (FYI, today’s WV landing is no. 1729).

A new river, the Middle Fork of the Tygart Valley River (my 1015th different river); on to the Tygart Valley River (3rd hit); on to the Monongahela (3rd hit); on to the Ohio (in beautiful downtown Pittsburgh).

Here’s my landing map:

landing

What caught my eye was how close together two little towns are: Mill Creek & Huttonsville. I did a little web research, but couldn’t find any info as to how this happened. Anyway, here’s a shot showing the two towns and their proximity. (FYI, the two town boundaries are only a half mile apart there along Rt. 219).

landing2

Anyway, here’s a broader view, featuring Mill Creek:

mill creek

Another thing that caught my eye was an extremely descriptive Huttonsville street name: “Huttonsville Medium Security Prison Road.” Here’s a close-up of that obviously aptly-named road:

huttonsville md sec prsn rd

I mean, really!?! Why wasn’t “Huttsonville Prison Road” good enough? And who decided the abbreviation should be “Huttonsville Md Security Prsn Rd?”

To find out if the road’s name is on current GPS data bases, I went to Google Maps and typed in “Huttonsville Medium Security Prison Road.” I got nothing. I then typed in “Huttonsville Md Security Rd” and Bingo! Google Maps took me right there . . .

Here’s the prison entrance:

Huttonsville Correctional Center

So why didn’t they call the road the Huttonsville Correctional Center Road??

And this, of the lovely Hutton House B&B (with five lovely rooms and prices starting at $95/night):

Hutton House B&B

I’ll close with this, of the Mill Creek one-room schoolhouse:

Mill Creek School

KS

Greg

© 2009 A Landing A Day

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Sewanee, Tennessee

Posted by graywacke on May 26, 2009

First timer? In this (hopefully) once-a-day blog, I have my computer select a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48). I call this “landing.” I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town I land near. I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is and what the various numbers and abbreviations mean), please see “About Landing,” (and “Abbreviations” and “Cryptic Numbers”) above.

Dan – I just nudged a PSer into OS-land. As often happens, my Score didn’t go up as much as for a full-fledged OSer. Anyway . . . TN; 25/24; 6/10; 11; 159.8.  Here’s my landing map:

landing

Two things to note:   first, my proximity to Sewanee, but, more importantly (for a hydrologist like me), is the proximity to the “Big Sink.” Here’s a close-up, showing just the waterways.  Note that I landed next to Lost Ck, and that Lost Ck just ends, not far from Big Sink.

watershed2

Here’s what’s going on: this region is underlain by limestone, which is dissolved slowly by water to form caves. Over hundreds of thousands of years, caves can become interconnected, and actually “capture” whole streams that happen to flow into a sinkhole. (A sinkhole is a cave where the roof has collapsed).

This is why the stream where I landed is known as “Lost Creek.” The creek flows into “Big Sink” where it disappears down into bedrock. It then makes it way through subterranean passageways all the way to the Tennessee River, where it likely discharges into the river bed below the water level, so you can’t even see it.

OK, OK, so there’s a little speculation here. The Tennessee River is about 13 miles away, which is a long ways for the water to travel through cave channels. But there’s no major stream anywhere else close, and it doesn’t make sense to me that Lost Creek pops out anywhere else other than a major stream. Part of my thinking is simple topography. Once the stream heads down into the rock, it ends up at a much lower elevation, and it has to continue flowing downhill. Well, my guess is that the only nearby stream that’s downhill is the Tennessee River (other, nearby smaller streams will be at a higher elevation).

So, Lost Creek has a fairly large watershed. Here’s a map:

watershed

FYI, the watershed is about 5 and a half miles long by 4 miles wide. Imagine: during a big summer rainstorm (say there’s 3 inches of rain), that’s one heck of a lot of water that ends up flowing through cave channels. I can’t help myself – I did the math: 3 inches of rain over that area equals over one billion gallons. OK, so quite a bit of that might end up soaked up in soils, and soaked up by plants, and evaporating away; but there’s still a lot of water that ends up down the sinkhole . . .

FYI, a region like this that has lots of caves is known by geologists as “karst.”

So, I landed near Sewanee. It appears that the big thing there is The University of the South, often known simply as Sewanee. From Wiki:

The University of the South is a private liberal arts college located in Sewanee, Tennessee. It was founded in 1858 and is owned by the Episcopal Church and its School of Theology is an official seminary of the church. Often known simply as Sewanee, the school has a strong academic reputation and recently ranked 40th in the annual US News & World Report list of liberal arts colleges. Sewanee has produced 25 Rhodes Scholars, garnering the distinction of the most Rhodes Scholars per capita of any school in the country.

Impressive stat about Rhodes scholars, eh? (And I’ve never heard of the school.) Anyway, here are some pix:

main

s2-1

s3-1

I’ll close with this gorgeous landscape shot taken outside of Sewanee:

countryside near sewanee

KS

Greg

© 2009 A Landing A Day

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Renova, Pennsylvania

Posted by graywacke on May 24, 2009

First timer? In this (hopefully) once-a-day blog, I have my computer select a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48). I call this “landing.” I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town I land near. I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is and what the various numbers and abbreviations mean), please see “About Landing,” (and “Abbreviations” and “Cryptic Numbers”) above.

Dan – Ding ding ding ding!!!! It’s a new decade!! That’s right, my latest USer means a new record low Score and also means my first venture into the 150s . . . PA; 23/26; 7/10; 10; 159.4. Wow. 159.4. How about that!

As promised, I’m going to share a stat that I only visit when I break into a new “decade.”  I’ll start with the raw numbers:

Score         Landing #     # of Landings/Decade

510              78

500              79                              1

490              79                              0

480              82                               3

470              82                              0

460              85                               3

450              94                               9

440              96                               2

430              97                              1

420              98                              1

410              98                              0

400              99                              1

390              144                           45

380              150                          6

370              157                         7

360              162                           5

350              164                           2

340              171                           7

330              176                          5

320              229                           53

310              256                           27

300              265                           9

290              312                           47

280              317                           5

270              319                           2

260              375                           56

250              426                           51

240              430                           4

230              455                           25

220              568                           113

210              648                            80

200              700                          52

190              759                           59

180              1179                         420

170              1459                          280

160              1727                         268

To explain:   My Score was less than 510 on landing 78. One landing later, my Score was less than 500. (That means that way back then, I lost more than 10 points for each USer!!! Now, it’s about 0.7!!) So, you can see that I was cruising all the way down to 400, when all of a sudden I hit a wall (aka a bunch of OSers), when it took 45 landings to get to 390.

So, just peruse the numbers, and you can see a pretty healthy glitch trying to get to 220 (when it took 113 landings), but then the big problem was getting to 180 (with an incredible 420 landings).

Obviously, if the landings were behaving, I’d end up with a nice smooth curve, with the number of landings between decades smoothly rising. Instead, the graph looks like this:

decade rate

Just for reference, here’s my Score graph (minus some of the very early very high scores). You can see the ugly 420 span – it begins where the graph shoots up about a third of way in from the left.

Score

By the way, you can see, I’m on a pretty good run of late.

Anyway, back to my landing. Here’s my landing map:

landing

You can see my proximity to Renovo, a little town right on the Susquehanna R. It took quite a few creeks to get to the Susquehanna: I landed in the Bear Run Stream watershed, on to the W Br of Big Run; on to Big Run; on to Beech Ck; on to Bald Eagle Ck; on to the Susquehanna (18th hit).

Renova (and it’s companion on the other side of the river, South Renova) seem like cool little river towns. Here’s a an overview photo (with Renovo on the right):

renovo1

And this picture of Renova (taken from South Renovo):

800px-Renovo,_Pennsylvania

KS

Greg

© 2009 A Landing A Day

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Coushatta, Louisiana

Posted by graywacke on May 22, 2009

First timer? In this (hopefully) once-a-day blog, I have my computer select a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48). I call this “landing.” I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town I land near. I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is and what the various numbers and abbreviations mean), please see “About Landing,” (and “Abbreviations” and “Cryptic Numbers”) above.

Dan – I landed in what has been a USer forever, but I’ve been landing there (in your home state) a little too frequently of late, so it’s now a USer . . . LA; 29/29; 6/10; 9; 160.0. As you can see, 160.0 is a new record low Score.

FYI, I’ve been keeping track of the number of landings it takes to drop the Score each 10 points, so when I finally break into the 150’s (maybe next landing), I’ll provide some details on this wonderful stat.

Here’s a first-time event:   I landed in the Jims River watershed, but I’m not going to count Jims River  as a river. Check out my landing map and you’ll see what I mean:

landing

I marked both ends of  “Jims River” (it’s labeled when zoomed in).  To the south (downstream), Jims River joins up with Bayou Pierre.  That makes Jims River about 6 miles long. I suspect that there have been some renaming of waterways through the years, but I just can’t call a six-mile long waterway a river.

Anyway, the Bayou Pierre is in fact a new “river,” (my 1011th river) on to the Red R of the South (41 hits); on to the Atchafalaya (47th hit).

Here’s a slightly expanded landing map, showing my proximity to Coushatta. The Red River is the unlabeled river that flows parallel to the railroad tracks.

landing2

Here’s a broader view:

Coushatta_LA

Wiki turns out to be the only source of info about Coushatta (pop 2300) that I could. The Wiki article really focused on racial unrest and violence beginning in Reconstruction:

Red River Parish (home of Coushatta) and the Red River valley were areas of unrest and white paramilitary activity and violence during the 1870s of Reconstruction. The parish had been based on cotton cultivation, dependent on the labor of enslaved African Americans who far outnumbered the whites. After the war, white planters and farmers tried to reestablish dominance over their former slaves.

Formed in May 1874 from white militias, the White League in Louisiana was increasingly well-organized in rural areas like Red River Parish. It worked to turn out the Republican Party, as well as suppress freedmen’s civil rights and voting rights. It used violence against officeholders, running some out of town and killing others, and acted near elections to suppress black and white Republican voting.

In one of the more flagrant examples of violence, in August 1874 the White League forced six Republicans out of office in Coushatta, then assassinated them before they could leave the state. Victims included the brother and three brothers-in-law of the Republican State Senator Marshall H. Twitchell. His wife and her brothers were from a family with long ties in the area.

The White League also killed five to twenty freedmen who had been escorting the Republicans and were witnesses to the assassinations. The events became known as the Coushatta Massacre and contributed to the Republican governor’s requesting more Federal troops from President Grant to help control the state.

With increased fraud, violence and intimidation, white Democrats regained control of the state legislature in 1876 and established what amounted to one-party rule. They passed laws making elections more complicated and issued a new constitution with provisions that effectively disfranchised most African Americans and many poor whites. This disfranchisement persisted for decades deep into the 20th century, before civil rights legislation and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 renewed protections for citizens’ suffrage.

I knew that there was a lot of ugliness during Reconstruction; I guess this is probably one of many examples.

Coushatta is named after an Indian tribe. It seems as though most of this tribe live in southwest LA, not up north near Coushatta. Anyway, here’s the Tribe’s symbol:

Bandera_Coushatta_Tribe

Here’s kind of a sad shot of downtown Coushatta “on a Sunday afternoon.”

800px-Downtown_Coushatta,_LA,_on_a_Sunday_afternoon_IMG_1661

And this of the highway bridge over the Red River at Coushatta:

bridge over the Red @ coushatta

KS

Greg

© 2009 A Landing A Day

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Calhoun Falls, South Carolina

Posted by graywacke on May 19, 2009

First timer? In this (hopefully) once-a-day blog, I have my computer select a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48). I call this “landing.” I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town I land near. I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is and what the various numbers and abbreviations mean), please see “About Landing,” (and “Abbreviations” and “Cryptic Numbers”) above.

Dan – Headin’ back down towards 160 with another visit to the SE . . . GA; 29/33; 5/10; 8; 160.7. Just one USer away from a new record low Score.  Note that this is the first time that the title of the post does not jive with the state I actually landed in.  As you’ll see, I landed right on the GA/SC border.

But first:  this is weird!  I landed in a lake for the second time in a row!!!  Here’s my three-clicks-out landing map:

landing

Here’s my six-clicks-out landing map:

landing2

You can see I landed near one of those round towns, which are typically in GA.  It just so happens that this round town (Calhoun Falls) is across the state line (and across the Savannah R) in SC.   Incidently, this is my 6th hit for the Savannah.

Here’s a broader view, featuring Calhoun Falls SC:

calhoun falls

The big lake I landed in is the Richard B. Russell Lake, which is dammed by the Richard B. Russell Dam. Here’s a picture of the dam:

800px-USACE_Richard_B_Russell_Dam_and_Lake

From the Army Corps of Engineers Richard B. Russell Lake webpage:

Welcome to Richard B. Russell Lake and Dam Project, the most recent multi-purpose water resource development built by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Savannah District. Due to Federal Laws that prohibit private exclusive use of public lands surrounding the lake, the area remains strikingly beautiful and picturesque

Many visitors express their appreciation with the Corps for maintaining the aesthetic qualities of the lake and shoreline – a unique experience for most outdoor enthusiasts in the area. With its undeveloped shorelines, Russell Lake provides an outdoor experience that goes beyond just fishing – visitors enjoy the beautiful scenery as well as the abundant wildlife.

Actually, I think it’s very cool that the lake shores remain very undeveloped.

From the same website, this about Dan Tucker, starting with words from the famous folk song:

“Ole Dan Tucker was a grand ole man;
He washed his face in a fryin’ pan;
Combed his hair with a wagon wheel;
Died with a tooth ache in his heel !”

Daniel Tucker was an early inhabitant of what is now the Richard B. Russell Lake area. He was born February 11, 1740 and died at the age of 78 on April 7, 1818. His grave rests on the shores of the lake. The amiable Reverend Daniel Tucker was a minister of the gospel, ferry boat operator and farmer. A friend to planters and slaves a like, Tucker prayed with both. To praise Tucker, slaves sang verse after verse of this popular folk song at corn shuckings and other social gatherings.

From Wiki, about the song “Ol’ Dan Tucker:

The blackface troupe the Virginia Minstrels popularized “Old Dan Tucker” in 1843, and it became a minstrel hit during the antebellum period. Today it is a bluegrass and country music standard.

The first sheet music edition of “Old Dan Tucker”, published in 1843, is a song of boasts and nonsense in the vein of previous minstrel hits. In exaggerated Black Vernacular English, the lyrics tell of Dan Tucker’s exploits in a strange town, where he fights, gets drunk, overeats, and breaks other social taboos. Minstrel troupes freely added and removed verses, and folk singers have since added hundreds more. Parodies and political versions are also known.

Hmmm – it doesn’t sound much like a song that praises Reverend Dan. Here are some more lyrics:

I come to town de udder night,
I hear de noise an saw de fight,
De watchman was a runnin roun,
Cryin Old Dan Tucker’s come to town.
Tucker was a hardened sinner,
He nebber said his grace at dinner;
De ole sow squeel, de pigs did squall
He ate da hog wid de tail and all.

Chorus:

So get out de way! Get out de way!
Get out de way! Old Dan Tucker.
Your to late to come to supper.

There are many other verses, none of which sing the praises of a white preacher. Continuing from Wiki:

A story dating to at least 1965 claims that “Old Dan Tucker” was written by slaves about a man named Daniel Tucker who lived in Elbert County, Georgia. Tucker was a farmer, ferryman, and minister who appears in records from the late 18th and early 19th centuries. The story, as related by Mrs. Guy Rucker, the great-great-granddaughter of one of Tucker’s neighbors, claims that Tucker became quite well liked by the slaves in his area through his ministry to them.

According to this interpretation, the lyrics address Tucker directly. The chorus, “You’re too late to get your supper” is a kindhearted taunt to a man who often arrived after dark, forcing his hosts to scrape up a meal for him. The song’s occasional lewdness is explained by the natural impromptu nature of its supposed origin.

Doesn’t really make much sense to me. Oh, well.

Here’s a nice shot of the lake shore:

lake russell

Here’s a picture of the Red Dot Grocery Store in Calhoun Falls, with the caption below:

red dot grocery store

This store in Calhoun Falls, SC has been with this family for over a hundred years!

Here’s an old shot of a bridge over the Savannah R (which is now underwater, thanks to the lake):

bridge now under water

I’ll close with this sunset over the lake:

lrbr_sunset-lg.bmp

KS

Greg

© 2009 A Landing A Day

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Lake Ellwell, Montana

Posted by graywacke on May 18, 2009

First timer? In this (hopefully) once-a-day blog, I have my computer select a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48). I call this “landing.” I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town I land near. I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is and what the various numbers and abbreviations mean), please see “About Landing,” (and “Abbreviations” and “Cryptic Numbers”) above.

Dan – Well, I had gone 28 landings without landing in my #1 nemesis; but all good things must come to an end. . . MT; 104/83; 5/10; 7; 161.4. For perhaps the first time, I’m going to show you my most-close-in view of my landing (i.e., what I first see when I enter the lat/long into StreetAtlas):

landing

Here’s my view with three zoom clicks out:

landing2

And this, with three more zoom clicks out:

landing 13

And here’s a broader view.  This landing is N48 / W111, up in the N-Cen part of the state:

landing15

So, I landed in Lake Ellwell, which was formed by building the Tiber Dam across the Marias R.  This was my fourth landing in the Marias; on to the Missouri (326th hit).

In a highly unusual departure for me, I’m not even going to mention any of the nearby towns, but will instead concentration solely on Lake Ellwell (which only seems right, seeing how as I actually landed in the lake).

I’ll start with a little history. Here’s an October 1952 photo showing President Truman pushing down the plunger to set off some dynamite to clear away some bedrock to start building the Tiber Dam:

Truman at tiber

Here’s a wonderful picture of the Lake:

42405 chester tiber dam am north pano 1st 105

And this shot of the landscape just downstream from the dam:

42405 chester tiber dam south use pano124

Speaking of below the dam, here’s another shot:

below_tiberdam

Back to the lake, here’s something about which I had no clue. What’s that? It’s the fact that pelicans are happily ensconced at Lake Ellwell:

Pelicans at the lake

And what the heck, here’s a sunset shot of the lake:

lake ellway1

KS

Greg

© 2009 A Landing A Day

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Marinette, Wisconsin

Posted by graywacke on May 17, 2009

First timer? In this (hopefully) once-a-day blog, I have my computer select a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48). I call this “landing.” I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town I land near. I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is and what the various numbers and abbreviations mean), please see “About Landing,” (and “Abbreviations” and “Cryptic Numbers”) above.

Dan – Ouch. I had a shot at a sub-160 Score, but no luck. I landed in a state that has been hovering around PS-land for ages. But unfortunately, I found it as an OSer right now . . . WS; 34/32; 6/10; 6; 160.9. Here’s my landing map, showing the proximity to the twin towns of Martinette WS and Menominee MI.

landing

I landed only two miles from the UP of MI (and also only two miles from the Menominee). No coincidence there; the Menominee River (along with the Brule River which flows into the Menominee) make up a portion of the boundary between WS & the UP of MI (the squiggly portion of the boundary, closest to Lake Michigan).  Here’s a map:

landing2

Speaking of the Menominee, for the fourth time I landed in the Menominee R watershed; on to Green Bay (not the town, the body of water); on to Lake Michigan (28th hit); on to the St. Lawrence (79th hit).

Here’s a broader view:

Marinette_WI

The twin cities are old lumber towns; logs came down to the Menominee to mills in both Marinette & Menominee. Here’s an aerial photo of the mouth of the Menominee (Marinette on the left; Menominee on the right):

M&M on the M

About Marinette (from Wiki):

The name “Marinette” is said to have come from the name of an early fur-trader’s common-law wife, Marie Antoinette Chevalier, a French and Native American woman who ran a trading post located near the mouth of the Menominee River and came to be known as “Queen Marinette.”

Marinette was first settled by a small Algonquin tribe, then became a French fur trading post in the 1800s. In the late 1800s it experienced a “lumber boom” as a result of its location along the Menominee River and next to Green Bay. Lumbering slacked off at the turn of the twentieth century, but the town has continued to take advantage of its position along those bodies of water with major paper mills, and other plants such as Marinette Marine.

Speaking of Marinette Marine, check out these photos of new ship launches.  (When I first looked at the one below, I thought it was a ship in big trouble before I realized it was a launch.)

Launch of the Henry Blake in Marinette

Mackinaw launch

Back in the ‘60s, they had a couple of big fires in the M&M twin cities.  The first is the former Henes Brewery:

henes_brewery_2_12-28-66

And this one, the Sugar Beet factory:

sugar_beet_fire_9-67

Here are a couple of shots of the lighthouse out at the end of the breakwater, starting with a very cold place to walk the dog:

cold place to walk the dog

And this ghostly shot:

Spring cometh with the fog


And I’ll close with the where to go if you’re hungry in Marinette and want to EAT:

where to EAT in Marinette

KS

Greg

© 2009 A Landing A Day

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Tellico Plains, Tennessee

Posted by graywacke on May 15, 2009

First timer? In this (hopefully) once-a-day blog, I have my computer select a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48). I call this “landing.” I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town I land near. I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is and what the various numbers and abbreviations mean), please see “About Landing,” (and “Abbreviations” and “Cryptic Numbers”) above.

Dan – First a word about my sketchy landing schedule.  A Landing A Day?  Ha!!  Well, first there was Eleuthera, and then work got a little crazy, and then Willow goes and has her third daughter.  (To the “I don’t know Greg” crowd, Willow is my daughter). Mother and my new granddaughter “Elle” (to be known as “Ellie”) are doing fine, although Elle’s a teeny thing, currently weighing something less than 6 lbs.

On to landing . . .

So, I landed in a marginal USer (which is now a PSer). One of the results of such a landing is that my Score didn’t go down very much (down only 0.3, when usually it goes down 0.6 or 0.7 for a more straight-ahead USer). Regardless, it’s a new record low Score, and I’m knocking on the door of 160 . . . TN; 24/24; 6/10; 5; 160.4.

I didn’t land near any town; I actually landed right in the town of Tellico Plains. Here’s a very close-in map, showing that I landed near the interestion of Loomis St. and Spence St.

landing

Here’s a broader view:

TellicoPlains_TN

A new river, the Tellico; on to the Little Tennessee (4th hit); on to the Tennessee (31st hit); on to the Ohio (105th hit).  Here’s a scenic picture of the beautiful Tellico:

TellicoRv2

From Wiki on Tellico Plains:

Tellico Plains occupies the former site of the Cherokee town of Great Tellico, which was one of the more important towns of the Overhill Cherokee during the 18th century. Two important roads met at Great Tellico, the Trading Path and the Warrior Path.

Nearby Coker Creek was the site of a minor gold rush during the late 1800s. The small crossroads (conveniently named “Coker Creek”) is still the site of a gold-panning tourist attraction. Visitors can rent pans and receive professional instructions from the proprietor of the souvenir shop. Visitors can also explore the old gold mines in the surrounding hills in the hopes of findng a nugget with some of the famous yellow ore, although the mines are in a state of disrepair.

Gold mining still exists on at least one private plot located slightly to the southwest of the tourist attraction.

There is a very complete town website from which I took most of the following. Click here to visit the site.

Here’s a picture of strip mining near Tellico Plains back in 1940. Wow. I’m glad there are a few more environmental regulations regarding strip mine reclamation!  I can’t believe the houses.  No pesky trees to block the beautiful view of land laid waste . . .

1940 strip mining 50 sq mi

Here’s a funny picture of a mail box at a Tellico Plains cemetery:

DeadLetter2a

And this nice shot of a farm swing outside of town:

Frmswng1a

Here’s a shot of the road heading down into Tellico Plains:

heading into Tellico Plains

And here’s a series of scenery shots:

Bald River falls

Mt1a

Starr2a

KS

Greg

© 2009 A Landing A Day

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Ashley Falls, Massachusetts

Posted by graywacke on May 11, 2009

First timer? In this (hopefully) once-a-day blog, I have my computer select a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48). I call this “landing.” I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town I land near. I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is and what the various numbers and abbreviations mean), please see “About Landing,” (and “Abbreviations” and “Cryptic Numbers”) above.

Dan –  Congratulations on your graduation!!  (For other readers, Dan just graduated from the University of Richmond with degrees in Biology and Journalism as well as minor in French).  I assume that you’ll be headed home and I’ll see you soon.  Anyway, on to landing:

Drum roll please! It’s a new record as, for only the fourth time; I landed in . . . MA; 4/6; 6/10; 4; 160.7.

Here’s a somewhat broader view than my usual landing map, showing my landing in far SW MA:

landing2

Here’s a closer view, showing my proximity to a state boundary triple point (MA, CT & NY):

landing

Although the largest town in the vicinity is Canaan CT, I couldn’t find much of interest. However, near Ashley Falls is a place known as Batholomew’s Cobble. I’ll start with a write-up and then show you some pictures:

Bartholomew’s Cobble is home to one of North America’s greatest diversities of fern species and their allies, as well as abundant woodland wildflowers. The Reservation is named for its two rocky knolls that rise above the Housatonic River. These cobbles consist mostly of limestone and marble, whose alkaline soil supports an unusual array of flora.

Away from the cobbles, the landscape changes to open fields dotted with red cedars and then to forest. Neutral to acidic soils here support coniferous and hardwood trees typical of a New England transitional forest, such as oak, pine, birch, hemlock, maple, and hickory. Freshwater marshes and beaver ponds are home to many types of plants and animals. The high point at Bartholomew’s Cobble, Hurlburt’s Hill, rises 1,000 feet to a twenty-acre upland field on the Massachusetts-Connecticut border that offers panoramic views northward up the Housatonic River Valley.

In total, the Reservation’s numerous and varied habitats feature more than 800 species of vascular plants and more forest types than anywhere else in Berkshire County. For this reason, the National Park Service designated Bartholomew’s Cobble a National Natural Landmark in 1971.

Here are some pictures, showing that this is truly a beautiful place!

bart cobble

Bartholomew's_Cobble_(Sheffield,_MA)

Bart's cobble

berkshires-1-sm

I’ll close with this handsome yellow warbler, happily living in Bartholomew’s Cobble:

yellow warbler

KS

Greg

© 2009 A Landing A Day

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