All my adult life I’m been intrigued by watersheds. Why? I guess it’s the simple fact that every single drop of water that falls on land anywhere on Earth is instantaneously part of a watershed.
The tiniest of watersheds are smaller than a square inch. The largest watershed in the U.S. is the watershed of the Mighty Mississippi River, which contains millions of acres. It starts at the Continental Divide in Montana, runs several thousand miles down the Missouri River drainage, and ends up flowing out of the Mississippi River delta into the Gulf of Mexico.
As I travel through any part of the U.S., I’m constantly trying to determine when I’m crossing from one watershed to another. It’s not easy to identify the specific geographic high ground that marks the transition from one watershed into another. Over the years, I’ve gotten better at the process, but still get frustrated in my attempts.
And, then? Voila! My good friend Rocky Crick plops into my email inbox a website called “River-Runner.” It’s a “fantabulous” website for watershed aficionados like me.
The lengthy website address is: https://river-runner.samlearner.com/?fbclid=IwAR2dWBI5-_p3mBdy8tXKv4oGt8i8s2UjO8HQ6_H_XLQu7tY7SAvLW2_v2Pc.
It uses Google Earth software and aerial photography to visually follow watersheds downstream. Here’s how neat it works: Open the website up to the map of the U.S. and click anywhere on it. Your click represents a falling drop of water. From where it lands, the website traces the downstream movement of that drop of water until it dumps into an ocean somewhere — providing landmarks for the whole “drop” journey. There are lots of ways to “fine tune” what you are watching.
While River-Runner is extremely interesting to me, it still leaves one question unanswered: How long does it take a drop of water to make it’s full watershed journey? No one knows and I can’t think of any way to measure it. So, I’ll just mark it down as one of life’s unsolved mysteries.
Our nation seems to lurch from one crisis to another. California has complained for years about chronic drought and no snowpack. Now it’s problem is flooding and an immense snowpack.
Our borders used to be relatively secure. Now they leak like a sieve.
A week ago, the condition of our banking system barely registered to the average guy or gal. This week the fragile banking system is No. 1 in the news and in conversations. This morning at the Old Geezers’ Breakfast Club, banking was the top topic for BS-ing about. The consensus among the 21 BS-ers seemed to be “the more regulators tell us it’s under control, the less likely it is.”
Interesting days are ahead of us.
This is the time of the year when new foals are being born and mares are being re-bred. The equine market has rebounded since it hit bottom a few years ago.
When thinking about the horse Industry, I’m reminded of my long-departed horseman buddy, Canter N. Trott. His favorite comment about raising horses was: “To be successful in the horse business, you don’t need good horses. You need good horse buyers.”
So true — and not just about horses.
I know spring weather is just around the corner. This week the harbingers of spring arrived — both robins and meadowlarks. I saw my first meadowlarks two days ago and this morning our yard was full of robins. They stayed a few hours and then moved on north.
The red-winged blackbirds won’t be too far behind and then the purple martins and the turkey buzzards.
The annual Flint Hills ritual “burning of the grass” has already started.
We continue with our downsizing project. We hope to downsize a bunch with a garage and yard sale. Unless we change our mind, the date is April 15-16.
A farmer is attending an aggie convention in Las Vegas and he becomes transfixed with the high-stakes gambling tables. He didn’t have the money, nor the inclination, to gamble for real, so he satisfied his urge by making mental bets.
In no time at all, he lost his mind.
Words of wisdom for the week: Here’s a word I bet few readers know the meaning of: “borborygmus.” And, we’ve all experienced it at one time or another. It means “the rumbling of gasses in our guts.”
Here’s a very simple, but highly effective, diet to follow to lose weight. “For every bite of food you put into your mouth, if it tastes good — spit it out.”
Have a good ‘un.