Toad River

Toad River

September 19, 2012

Last night we felt as if we had a million-dollar home with picture windows lakeside.   Beavers are preparing for winter, building up their lodge to left of center in front of our site.  Their wakes make V’s in the calm water.  We watch their heads moving in purposeful lines to near-shore grasses where they appear to be having dinner.   When they swim at the right angle, we see their tails working like very efficient outboard motors.  One visible head is trailed by a leafy branches rising from the water like sails over its back.  We see one pushing a maybe 4-inch diameter, 2-foot long log, working it around the lodge into a permanent placement.

This morning, there’s a new collection of tree limbs with branches of green leaves still attached, floating like an island close to the beaver lodge.   Too bad we can’t spend the next day or two watching the beavers reduce it to building material and incorporating it in the lodge.

This one is headed toward us, probably on his way to bring another stick home.
This one is headed toward us, probably on his way to bring another stick home.

The branch this beaver is bringing to the lodge still has side branches and leaves and looks as if he has hoisted a flag

Area view of the lodge and the fresh lumbering
Area view of the lodge and the fresh lumbering
The dark pile of logs is the lodge; the fresh wood is somehow anchored to the bottom of the lake so they can process it later, probably nocturnally.
The dark pile of logs is the lodge; the fresh wood is somehow anchored to the bottom of the lake so they can process it later, probably nocturnally.
In the morning we found a tree freshly felled
In the morning we found a tree freshly felled
Evidence that beavers were working here
Evidence that beavers were working here
We are amazed at the size of the chips the beaver gnawed off when they felled this tree.
We are amazed at the size of the chips the beaver gnawed off when they felled this tree.

A recently felled aspen is surrounded by large wood chips, the stump is beaver-gnawed, not chopped by any human ax.

The lake itself reflects mountains and gold-glowing aspens.

To top it all off, there are a sink with running water and an electric outlet under a shelter in the tenting area, Wi-Fi, showers without extra charge, AND at the price we expect to pay for an ordinary tent site with only a water faucet and chemical toilet.

P.S.  We didn’t find any toads here!

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