Three category four hurricanes in a row through Central America and wildfires throughout the western United States have made the anticipation of weather less a premonition of happiness than a prayer for strangers caught out.
Summer in Minnesota was enjoyable, I again volunteered for the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency as a Volunteer Stream Monitor along Minnehaha Creek, a 22 mile stream through Western Minneapolis flowing out of Lake Minnetonka. Since a 2014 flooding, changes in the stream and surrounding bodies of water have mandated changes in the way it is managed, and following along as a volunteer has been a gradual evolvement from passing spectator to willing participant.
My responsibilities as a Citizen Stream Monitor are fairly simplistic, and often the process of getting to my water collection site is more complicated than the process of measuring the turbidity or generating quantitative judgements of the recreational or aesthetic potential. I hope to resume my volunteering when the snow and ice melt next year, but for now it is back to planning for winter bicycle riding (studded tires and bring a bus pass just in case) and volunteering with the City of Lakes Loppet Foundation during their Loppet Festival in Minneapolis, which this year coincides with the Super Bowl.
|Minnehaha Creek Northern Pike, Photo by Michael McKinney|
|Minnesota Nice Ride late season, photo by Michael McKinney|
|Bread, photo by Michael McKinney|
|Pottery through the Saint Paul Community Education Program, photo by Michael McKinney|
|Me with a Largemouth Bass, anon photo|
|Saint Paul Mural, photo by Michael McKinney|
|Mountain Biking on July 4th at Wirth Park, Minneapolis, photo by Michael McKinney|
|Minnehaha Creek Smallmouth Bass, photo by Michael McKinney|
|Minnehaha Creek Largemouth Bass, photo by Michael McKinney|