Sunday, January 31, 2016

Big Creek Lake

First time I ever saw a white Fog Rainbow. Sun was behind me. 

After the fog burnt off. Not a ripple on the glass smooth water surface.

Submerged aquatic vegetation being combed by the current. 

Upstream of Big Creek Lake the creek narrows.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Is This Polluted Shoreline Acceptable?

February 2012

February 2013

March 2014

October 2015

January 28, 2016

This is the trashy shoreline of Dog River in Mobile Alabama, USA. All the photos are taken in nearly the same place about 100 yards from Dog River Park.

The City of Mobile's Municipal Storm Water System serves as a conduit to propel the litter chunking community's trash into the State's public waterway called as Dog River.

Despite years of complaints about City's MS4 trash being sent to the shorelines of Dog River you can see the result of the City and State's response to my complaints. The shoreline trash, which occasionally is floating in the water is getting denser Year after Year and no one gives a fuck.

What is floating in the public waterways in the City of Mobile's jurisdiction? No one really knows because the Environmental Enforcement Agencies are incompetent and do not care to address pollution complaints.

Is it acceptable for a City to fill wetlands with trash some of which is hazardous to public health and marine life? 

Here are a couple more photos of the wetlands of Dog River.

January 28, 2016

January 28, 2016

And all this trash is about 100 yards from Dog River's Spring Clean Up and Fall Coastal Clean Up Zone. That is why I say volunteer clean ups are worthless in cleaning up a polluted waterway like Dog River.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Stormwater Systems Bandalong Litter Trap

Shoreline upstream of the Stormwater Systems Bandalong litter trap remains polluted with trash.

Trashy shoreline downstream of the litter trap.

Trashy shoreline downstream of the litter trap.

Trashy shoreline downstream of the litter trap.

Any community considering the purchase of a hugely expensive Stormwater System's Bandalong Litter Trap should NOT waste money on it. At least not if the waterway is in the tidal zone.

Despite a $660,000 Bandalong litter trap installation in Eslava Creek, the creek remains polluted with trash both upstream and downstream.

Expecting a single litter trap to result in a cleaner watershed with many tributaries is like putting a large dust pan in one place along a Mardi Gras parade route and expecting it to corral the parade trash for easy removal. Sure, a large dust pan will catch a few pieces Mardi Gras trash but the remainder of the parade route will remain trashy unless laborers pick up the rest of the trash not caught in the dust pan.

The reality from the perspective of my kayak is, if a community wants clean waterways it will take manual labor working on the water from an appropriate boat and on the shorelines on foot to remove the litter chunking community's storm water trash from where it ends up in each navigable waterway after rains. 

To me it seems the Stormwater Systems Bandalong Litter Trap is a burden to the City of Mobile because to remove a few pounds (bags) of lightweight plastic bottles and styrofoam trash after a heavy rain seems to require removing tons of leaves, pine straw, twigs, and grass too. Then those tons of wet natural debris have to be hauled away.

Mobile's $660,000 would have yielded better results by employing a Clean Up Boat trash picker upper person for 15 years. 

Look no further than the Charles River in Boston to see a Clean Up Boat operation that has been successfully keeping the Charles River clean for over a decade at almost no cost to the City if Boston.

Local environmental groups and the City of Mobile were told about the successful Charles River Clean Up Boat operation over 5 years ago and all turned down a opportunity to mimic the waterway cleanup in Mobile's trashy waterways. 

Nooo, some environmental group leader was bent on getting a litter trap instead of helping to get a Clean Up Boat in operation. She got her wish and Eslava Creek and Dog River are still lined with a sickening amount of trash because apparently the City and Community as a whole still employ ZERO full time trash picker uppers to clean the community's trash polluted waterways. That is retarded.

Trashy shoreline of Dog River downstream of the Bandalong Litter Trap.

Contrary to the popular notion that all storm water trash is benign, storm water trash includes trash hazardous to the environment and public health, like electronics and chemicals.

Not only have environmental agencies, groups and the Government failed Flint Michigan, they are failing to care about Alabama waterways too. That is pathetic.

Got Cancer Yet?

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Open Water Hazard

Saw this freak 2-3 foot wave moving across Mobile Bay last week. There was not a single ship visible on the horizon. 

Freak waves like this is one reason why when on open waters that (sit-in) kayakers wear their spray skirt, even if the waters are calm. By the time a kayaker hears a wave like this coming there likely will not be time to put the spray skirt on.

A 3 foot breaking wave could dump alot of water into kayak or even capsize the kayak if the individual does not have time to prepare for the wall of water.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Friday, January 15, 2016

Dauphin Island Launch Site Changes

The protective rock piles perpendicular to the shore on the East end of Dauphin Island by Fort Gaines helped calm the waters making for an easier kayak launch. This is how the area looked in the past, with about 5-6 rows of rock piles.

Work crews recently removed all those rows of rocks and moved them to a single row of rocks going to the southwest with two small gaps.

The good news is if the winds are out of the south or south east, the new rock jetties will make launching a kayak even easier. The bad news is I suspect when winds are out if the southwest launching a kayak will be more difficult.

However, there is a beach restoration planned and if they extend the sand far enough out toward the rocks, that may make launching easy regardless of wind direction.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Sunset Hues

I thought the first photo below was going to be the end of the color of the sunset yesterday. Surprisingly the colors on different cloud layers changed and lasted another 30 minutes. Ahhh nice.
5:02 pm

5:12 pm

5:15 pm. Thought the sunset was done again.

5:18 pm

5:21 pm

5:23 pm. Thought the sunset was about over again.

5:29 pm. The colors just kept going on and on.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Dog River Park Blight

May 2009 - Kayak launch at Dog River Park - functional.

April 2011 - City of Mobile officials and Dog River Clearwater Revival officials designate the Dog River Park kayak launch as an official launch site of the newly dedicated Dog River Scenic Blueway. Launch site still functional.

January 2016 - The City of Mobile and Dog River Scenic Blueway group quit maintaining the Dog River Park Kayak Launch despite complaints. The newly dedicated Dog River Scenic Blueway kayak launch site is no longer functional because of blight.

And if you look closer at the Blighted Dog River Park Kayak Launch area you will see it is almost always polluted with trash because the City of Mobile still appears to have no plan to regularly remove trash from their park shorelines. No one cares if Dog River Park stays polluted with trash.

Shame on the City of Mobile Parks Department, Dog River Scenic Blueway Committee, Dog River Clearwater Revival, and ADEM. Shame on Mayor Stimpson who stood on the trashy shoreline of Dog River Park making a video about littering yet he cannot implement a simple plan to remove trash from the park shoreline every time the park is mowed.

A City that refuses to regularly pick up trash from their park property and refuses to mow around the Kayak Launch they helped officially dedicate is a City that does not care about its waterway environment.

And it is not just the Kayak Launch area of Dog River Park that is blighted. Easy to see Trash is ignored even in plain view of the park signage.

Dog River is one big Trash Chute to Mobile City Leaders and the community of Litter Chunkers. ADEM is obviously still ignoring the City of Mobile's continuing violations of State and Federal pollution laws.

Saturday, January 09, 2016

Ugly Rattlesnake Bayou

Rattlesnake Bayou is known for its summer visits by the protected Manatees. Unfortunately the area around the Rangeline Road bridge near where the manatees feed is getting more polluted with motorist's litter. 

Doesn't it give you a great sense of security to see much of the motorist litter being empty bottles of alcohol? Drink the booze while driving and chunk the evidence.

Anyway, ALDOT failed to put up a fence to block motorist litter from going into Rabbit Creek. ALDOT apparently has no program to remove roadside litter from waterways in the vicinity of ALDOT bridges.

Apparently Alabama Department of Environmental Management's NPDES permit for ALDOT does not require ALDOT to do anything to either deter polluting of waterways that busy State highways cross or do anything to remove the motorist trash pollution from the waterways State highways cross.

It is pollution as usual in Mobile Alabama and no one gives a fuck even when the waterway is a documented destination of the rare and protected Sea Cows. Are environmental watch dog groups like Mobile Baykeeper too busy organizing beer parties to be concerned about waterway pollution? It appears so.

There are not many waterways in Mobile that state roads cross and they are all trashy in the vicinty of bridges.

Wednesday, January 06, 2016

Helen Wood Park Kayak Launch

It appears the Dog River Scenic Blueway committee proceeded with their plans to designate Helen Wood Park as an official Kayak/Canoe launch site. The new launch sign is up. Nice inviting sign to the unsuspecting kayaker.

Years ago someone dumped gravel along the shoreline on the park's north side making it a stable shoreline to launch a kayak from.

Today there is no sign of the gravel. The area is now overgrown with shoreline weeds because no one maintains the kayak launch site. To make matters worse, someone put out a line of concrete objects in the water now covered with sharp barnacles. People launching a kayak have a dangerous sharp obstacle to get over. Depending on the tide the concrete is sometimes submerged. Not a safe place to launch.

Of course, kayakers can try launching along Helen Wood Park's wooden bulkhead where often 1-2 foot waves from Mobile Bay pound with dangerous force. Not a safe place to launch.

The shoreline at Helen Wood Park is a dangerous area to launch a kayak from. I told the Dog River Scenic Blueway four years ago after doing extensive launch site research that Helen Wood Park was "not suitable" as a kayak launch. Especially when there are much safer places to launch from within about a mile of Helen Wood Park.

The Dog River Scenic Blueway group apparently got some grant money and they squandered it any way they could. Too bad the DRSB group can't find some grant money to maintain some of the kayak launch sites they developed and advertise. 

Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Sunset on Dog River

The City of Mobile uses Dog River as a Garbage Chute in violation of the Federal Clean Water Act leaving many waterfront homeowners burdened to remove the City's storm water trash after every heavy rain. Ugly sunsets for some as seen in the above photo taken today.

But, if you get away from the shoreline of Dog River sunsets can be more enjoyable.

Sunday, January 03, 2016

New Year Pedal

Last year I did not get out in the Hobie Adventure kayak a single time, so I'm starting the New Year off right by dusting off the Pedal kayak and getting it in the water. Got to see both a small rainbow and a colorful sunset.