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Going with the Flow
May 16, 2005
Iron Bridge Campsite, Minnesota
The river splits into countless branches
throughout the wetlands. Some peter out into nothing and
flow under floating bogs of cattails and rushes. There are
a few distinct channels, but for the most part you pick
your way through as best you can. The only clue which way
to go is the rivergrass growing on the bottom of the
streambed. The grasses bend with the current and point the
We have a map, compass, and GPS, but these are all useless when the river changes so dynamically. The bogs constantly break up and come back together as the river level changes, creating new routes through the wetlands. Sometimes you have to let go of being in complete control of the situation and just follow the rivergrass. It’s an exercise in controlling your frustration if you follow the wrong channel and end up at a dead end.
The sun is setting over the wetlands, reflecting in the river not thirty feet from me. I’d take a picture but it’s pointless. There’s no way to I can capture the red, yellow, purple, orange, and blue of the sky right now. What a great way to end the day.