Friday, September 02, 2011
When a Lake Isn't a Lake
I live in a beautiful town. It's a town that people drive through on their way to the mountains by the thousands, especially in the summertime. The lake on Highway 34, leading to Rocky Mountain National Park and Estes Park, is one of the most intriguing sights in our town. People come out on vacation, drive by the lake, see the amazing view of the Rockies, go home, quit their jobs, and move here. The view from there is amazing, and different every season.
When I first moved here (and I know it's the same with everyone else who has moved here), I was astounded to find out that the beautiful body of water is really owned by a ditch company in the town 30 miles east of us. What is a ditch company, you ask? It's a company which provides irrigation water for the farmers. At some point each summer, the lake goes down a bit as the ditch company diverts the water to the farmers' fields.
This spring, we had such a huge run-off from the massive amounts of snow in the mountains last winter that the lake was filled to the brim all summer long. I just loved driving by it several times a day and enjoying the abundance of water. The little beach area was seething with hot humanity trying to cool off all summer long. Unfortunately, the only people who can use the lake for boating and jet-skiing are those who live directly on the shore of the lake, who have been given special rights to use it.
Be we have a dirty little secret around here - well, really, a sandy little secret. Suddenly, about two weeks ago, the water began to disappear at an alarming rate of speed - more water gone more quickly than I can remember (except for the summer a few years ago when they drained the whole thing to work on the pipes that transport the water to the east).
On top of it all, because of the high water all summer long, the intense heat we had, a great amount of algae formed, which then dried on the sand, and creating an incredibly putrid odor, permeating the north end of town, and causing the "lucky" residents on the shore to keep their windows closed.
It has been very sad to drive by the lake on my many trips from north to south and back each day. I keep hoping soon the lake will fill up again. The poor birds and geese seem so bewildered as they stand on the sand bars, wondering what happened to their wonderful spot.
Not very romantic, is it?? I thought of the stark difference between man-made things and the creations of God. Man can try to emulate God's beauty, but we never do it as well, do we? I'll keep you posted!