Saturday, February 04, 2017

Nunn Creek mudland

The road leading to Tyee Spit passes between the back walls of a mall and a large, wild, inaccessible, shrubby wetland, the bottom lands where Nunn Creek joins the Campbell River estuary.

In the summertime, it's green, and echoes with the twitterings, quackings, squallings, and squeaking of birds. (The eagles are the squeakers; their voices seem to have been borrowed from the mice they prey on.) Fish; trout and salmon; grow up in the shallow streams; frogs dodge hungry blue herons near the banks.

The rest of the year, it's all brown. The leaves are gone, the grasses dying, exposing the brown mud beneath the bare brown branches. Even the water is brown with rotting leaves and eroding mud. When the dying sunlight hits it just right, it becomes momentarily beautiful, but the light fades quickly, and all there is to see again is a tangle of dull brown sticks against a dull brown floor.

And then it snowed! It was still snowing lightly when I found a parking spot and crossed the road to the edge of the mudlands.

And the mud is now white. The bird in the distance is an eagle. The houses on the far right are in a First Nations housing development; this wetland is on Reserve land.

More snow and water. The two birds flying are ducks. Along the street edge, wild roses grow; look closely, and you can see the red rose hips.

This land is almost impassible on foot. Not that I'd want to disturb the birds and frogs, but even if I did ...

Google map view. There seems to be the remains of an old road across, and I've found both access points, but the road is long gone. All this area, at one time, was given over to industrial and log storage areas; the entire estuary is in the process of being re-greened.

A bend in Nunn Creek.

This bit looks passable via canoe or kayak. Along the very outer edge, green stalks are the invasive broom, trying to compete with the wild roses.

From literature I've seen, I gather that there may be some unusual plants to be found here; chocolate lilies feature on one brochure. If that old road is walkable without damaging anything, I may tiptoe along there in the summer to see what I can find.

The old map may be helpful. The red line points to the mudland.


1 comment:

  1. That looks fascinating.bet there'd be black flies for a bug magnet like me!:-(

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