The Star - News, views and advertising of the Grand Coulee Dam Area

 
Coulee Medical Center ER and Walk-In Care
 

By Jess Utz 

Jess, Shut Up - Missing the missing trees

 


Over the last few weeks, trees and shrubs have been disappearing between Pole Park and The Star newspaper. The culprit? USBR.

This made me think of the joggers and walkers that use that path every morning, afternoon and evening. Shade will be gone, protection from the rain and wind gone. It made me think of the bicyclists in the triathlon and the new view that awaits them as they exit Grand Coulee and head for the dam.

I also thought of the birds (birding is a new hobby of mine, even though my son thinks I am going crazy) and those premiere nesting sites overlooking Crescent Bay. I thought of the golden eagle that perched on those trees every once in a while, waiting for a snack to reveal it self. I thought of the winter months and the gorgeous white frost with which Jack Frost painted those trees.

But most of all I thought of the scruffy little man with a beard that walked his old companion every day down that path. Some days resting in the shade of those now absent trees, some days chasing a stick or a ball. The sense of mourning the big white canine must feel as it is not getting to walk there right now and when it finally does, the BIG change. No more sparrows to chase, or shade in which to rest its old bones; the chipmunks and squirrels have moved on to a better place. But for the dog, this was part of its home, just as it is mine and yours.

I have heard it takes 40 years for a tree to grow to maturity. If that is true, then I will be long gone before I see another bird of prey roosting in those trees, and the dog’s walk will be forever changed.

Now, I am not a tree hugger in the sense of the word, but I am an outdoors man. I love to be outside in nature. Hunting, fishing, now birding, camping and hiking have been a big part of my family’s lives, and I have been trying more and more to see beauty in everything God has created for us. But recently I have not been able to do those activities that I have always loved. So it was the simple walks or drives or just simply looking out my window that filled the desire to see nature.

The USBR has already cut down the trees, for whatever reason, and it’s too late for this beloved area. But I think its time to stand up as a community for the things we love about our area. Whether it’s for our parks, or our lakes; whether it’s for picking up the trash that litters our community, for our landmarks, or for the trees. For our grandparents that left a legacy here, for our parents that raised us here and for our children that are growing up here and for the fluffy white dog that will continue to be walked down this same path that is forever changed.

 

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