Blue Green Algae, Pattie Shows Up for a Paddle and I Work on a Well

Tuesday September 15, 2015 Jenner CA.

Jeff and Celeste where at the boat ramp this morning taking reading and getting water samples. They work for the Sonoma County Water Agency. Jeff has been coming down here for a good number of years now. I’ve watched him go from a young man to a getting older guy. :O)

Blue Green Algae

Anyway, I thought I’d check on the facts again about the Blue Green Algae which is known to be putting some toxins in the water right now. I’ve had several people inquire about it and I wanted to make sure I was giving them the right information about it.

I first asked if he was measuring any of the toxin in the water here. He said yes, about 400 something or other, which was a low reading.

I then asked to repeat what he said about when the blue green algae is dangerous. He said when you see it along the shoreline and starting to dry out, it releases the most toxins big time and you would not want to eat any of it at this stage as it takes out your liver. Frying out along the shoreline, it would be maybe a six inch diameter patch of it, lots of times in a green larger patch of algae. Which I’m not sure, but maybe this green stuff is from a different type, but I need to check on that. So don’t eat any of the stuff and you should be ok.

Anyway, here’s Jeff recording readings he’s getting from the meters that go out to the probes he has out in the water behind him on the boat ramp. One of them is for the Blue Green Algae.jeff


Celeste was busy with water samples up at the truck as I put my boat in the water.

The wind was up a bit so it looked like it might be a windy day and with the wind up, there weren’t many other boaters on the water.

I paddled across the river and pulled into the little channel on the upper end of Penny Island and sat for a good while here mostly out of the wind.jenner


I watched someone put a boat in the water back at the boat ramp. Being the wind was up and the person was going out in it, they got  some points. The person paddled up the river going by in front of me while I watched and disappeared up the river.

Eventually, I paddled through the channel to the other side of the island through this channel.



I was surprised to see the other kayaker pull into this spot, just as I do, so I thought something was up. Most people shoot on past this spot or go down the back channel towards the mouth area.patti


When I caught up to that person, I said, coming up behind you, which is the courteous thing to do so you don’t scare the heck out of someone.

I heard, is that you Bob? I said yes and I’ll bet you’re Patti.

So we headed up stream. Patti seemed to paddle pretty fast, faster than I wanted to go most of the time, so she got ahead of me here.fastpatti


She continued up the river and I crossed over to see what birds were at Paddy’s rock.birds


There were some cormorants a couple seagulls and these geese just resting on the gravel, taking it easy.geese


Across the river, I could see Patti scooting along, so I choose a heading to intercept her up the river a bit.

Here you can see Patti paddling along the other side of he river.hauling


I caught up with her and asked if she’d been to Willow Creek yet, which was a yes on the road, but not in the boat so I suggested we head up that way, even as the wind was picking up.

Along the way, I saw this little bird hopping along the shoreline. bird


By the time we got to Willow creek the wind was up good now, maybe fifteen miles an hour and it was blowing good back in the creek. Here we are just approaching the bridge which we went under.willow


It was even windier at the end of the creek and the wind had blown all the moss to the end too, so there was a bunch of that. We didn’t stay long and headed back out, into some more wind.windjup


I knew if we were going to make it back I”d need to show Patti how to stay on the edges of the river to stay out of as much wind as possible. Normally when I try to teach people about this they just don’t get in close enough, especially if there are trees along the way.

But when it’s real windy like this, they see me doing what I say, getting close to shore and scooting along fairly fast. So if they don’t want to work too hard, they get the idea and get their butts closer to the shoreline. It didn’t tale Patti too long to get the idea. :O)

I finally told her she paddles way too fast for me and she fell in behind me. This was actually a good idea, as now she had to stop when I did instead of high tailing it and getting all tired out from beating the wind. We paddle in the wind, along the shore of course, then pull in a spot out of the wind and stop for a break and repeat that all the way down, which worked well.

Naked Ladies

We saw these pink flowers on this dock as we paddled by. Naked ladies I think they are called. Guess what people get when they type in Naked ladies at Google? I get a number of hits from that. I don’t think that’s what most people expect. :O)

These flowers pop up out of the ground at this time of the year. They don’t have any leaves, just a stock with the pink flower on it.nakedladies


I couldn’t get Patti to stop at Dead Deer Gulch on the way up, but now, she was willing to stop just up ahead under the trees out of the wind for a break. The spot is a sorta neat area with big ferns in it, although they were all brown right now. I don’t really like the name I have for this spot. Maybe fern grotto?grotto


The wind got  a bit better as we paddled along, but was still up. Across the river these two running horses caught our eyes. They like to run down to this spot to feed. horses


We continued on down the river and I showed Patti how to cross the little channel on the end of Penny Island and we went in for the day and headed on home.

At home I knew I needed to check out an old well for my brother which hasn’t been used in years since we tapped into the water spring up the hill, so it’s been sitting around for twenty or more years. I checked the power and got it working, the power I mean. The pump seemed to be frozen up as it didn’t turn, but I could see by the sparks on the relay switch that power was getting to the pump, but no water.

So I decided the cap needed unbolted and lifted to see what’s down there and to measure the well depth and the static water depth to see how things were doing.

Here’s the well and my tools were I was working.wellwork


Of course the well cap didn’t want to come off, so I had to get a crowbar to pry it up. I measured with a weighted string to the bottom of the well which  turned out to be about 46 feet deep.

Then I put a weight float on a string and measured how far the water was down in the well which turned out to be about 24 four feet down from the top.

It’s interesting to note, our new well which is across the road from this one is at a water level of 18 feet, which may indicate they have different water sources, which is a good thing I hope.

I put all the tools away for now and  it was almost dark, so that was it for the day.

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One Response to Blue Green Algae, Pattie Shows Up for a Paddle and I Work on a Well

  1. Patti Godwin says:

    Very fun day! Thanks for your hospitality and advice on the river!

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