The adventuresome life of a Great Pyrenees/Newfoundland dog in Northwestern Ontario

Posts tagged ‘Siggy’s Island’

Flood Update

We are still having rain nearly every day, and the water continues to rise slowly throughout our area.

In Kenora, the city parents have decided to close some of the public land extenders since most of them are now underwater. We’ve seen pictures on Facebook of two-legger homes further downriver from us where sandbagging is complete and holding the rising river at bay. A waterfront restaurant in Kenora – on the Lake of the Woods – has had to close as its floor is now underwater (not the first time this building has suffered – Elizabeth wonders why businesses are even allowed to locate there…).

This is the Boathouse Restaurant just two blocks from the bookshop. The plastic barrels and the old boat are on the wooden walkway and filled with water to keep the structure from floating away.

This is the Boathouse Restaurant just two blocks from the bookshop. The plastic barrels and the old boat are on the wooden walkway and filled with water to keep the structure from floating away.

Elizabeth was hoping to go out in the canoe on a photo safari, just to see how things looked from Darlington Bay level. Unfortunately, the weather has been so unstable and terribly windy that she couldn’t risk going out with her camera gear. But she took some photos on the waterfront of our neighbourhood (sorry for the lens drops and fuzziness – she was shooting between and during squalls) so you could see what’s happening here. And our friend Karin contributed a couple to show what’s happening over on Siggy’s Island at their house.

Here is our pumphouse. It is usually much farther from the shore. we're a bit worried about the waterline floating up like that, but don't know what we can do about it. It's still functioning, anyway...

Here is our pumphouse. It is usually much farther from the shore. we’re a bit worried about the waterline floating up like that, but don’t know what we can do about it. It’s still functioning, anyway…

 

Squall moving through, so we took shelter here. Nasty weather!

Squall moving through, so we took shelter here. Nasty weather!

 

Our neighbours two doors down must go uphill to their floating dock now. Normally, they could have a good slide downhill!

Our neighbours two doors down must go uphill to their floating land extender now. Normally, they could have a good slide downhill!

Elizabeth says it’s kind of difficult to understand how big a deal this is because the shoreline is so steep that non residents wouldn’t think the water was necessarily high. So she found an old photo of The Point so you could see better. She used it for an ad for her bookmarks and couldn’t find the original, so please ignore the text.

The cliff is about 4.5m at the highest point when the water is at normal levels.

The cliff on The Point is about 4.5m at the highest point when the water is at normal levels.

 

Taken yesterday between squalls. We're still getting severe storms/downpours every day.

The same view (slightly wider angle) taken yesterday between squalls. We’re still getting severe storms/downpours every day.

Karin managed to take some pictures during a sunny period last week:

Karin & Dan are watching with anxious eyes as the water goes up. We aren't sure why they haven't sandbagged - perhaps there isn't a way of getting the equipment over to Siggy's Island.

Karin & Dan are watching with anxious eyes as the water goes up. We aren’t sure why they haven’t sandbagged – perhaps there is no way of getting the equipment over to Siggy’s Island. BTW, the far shore in this photo is the other side of The Point and my ‘estate’, from where I used to bark over to Siggy.

 

They've done their best to help the Loons in the area. This Loon has two puppies now, and another pair in the lake that drains into Darlington Bay also are able to raise their family thanks to Karin and Dan's efforts to put their nests on floating (anchored) platforms. The Loons are so thankful that they sing us lullabies every night!

They’ve done their best to help the Loons in the area. This Loon has two puppies now, and another pair in the lake that drains into Darlington Bay also are able to raise their family thanks to Karin and Dan’s efforts to put their nests on floating (anchored) platforms. The Loons are so thankful that they sing us lullabies every night!

A local photographer friend of Elizabeth’s, Tom Thomson, has also been out with his camera. He said she could share this video with you, taken at the headwaters of the West Arm of the Winnipeg River, travelling from Lake of the Woods directly toward the Norman Dam. It shows one of the hazards of flooding in this region. As the water rises, it lifts something called ‘floating bog’, which grows in quiet, still waters in bays or between islands along the Lake. New currents, in the usually current-free areas where this floating bog occurs, tear it apart, carrying pieces downstream at, as you can see, an alarming rate. These are thick, solid mats of vegetation, sometimes with trees or shrubbery growing on them. Even two-leggers can often walk quite safely on this type of bog, although they will probably get their feet soaked along the way. It is not uncommon, during high water years, to see someone struggling to pull bog islands such as these out to safer locations using a tow rope attached to their growling floating tin cans. The mat shown here could easily tear a wooden land extender from its moorings or damage a moored floating tin can.

 

Some Sad News…

Just before the ice went out this Spring, Elizabeth and I heard an ATV pull up to the shore at Al & Joanne’s place. It was mid-week, so, we thought it would be a good idea to run over and investigate.

We caught up to two two-leggers on the Big Gravel Path, where they were just getting into their respective growling machines. I recognised Siggy’s two-legger Karin (she sent me home one day when I tried to come over the ice to visit Siggy) and Elizabeth introduced me to Karin’s husband, Dan. You may remember Dan. He’s my hero; remember the story I told you about him?

I am a bit shy around Dan. He’s a big man; he was wearing black today, which scares me a little bit…; and, well, it isn’t everyday that a dog meets one of her ultimate heroes. I just felt overwhelmed by his presence.

Elizabeth and Siggy’s two-leggers had quite a chat; they hadn’t seen each other for a long time. While they talked, I waited patiently, looking around a bit to see if I could see Siggy in one of the vehicles. I wondered why she hadn’t been answering my barks over to her island. I’ve always enjoyed sharing the neighbourhood news with Siggy. Although we’ve never met nose-to-nose, we’ve always had a good rapport.

And then my ears pricked. I heard the two-leggers mention Siggy, and Elizabeth ask if her two-leggers were going to get another dog, or if they were going to wait a while. Siggy had gone over the Rainbow Bridge earlier in the Spring, before she was able to make it back to her island.

I miss my morning and evening chats with my old pal. And Siggy was much older than she seemed. She was 16 human years old. That’s at least 112 dog years! She lived a long and happy life with his two-leggers on Siggy’s Island, and she travelled to all kinds of interesting places with them. She always had a good story to tell me when we visited across the waves.

Good-bye, Siggy. Next time we meet, we’ll share a bone and bark at a mountain lion shoulder-to-shoulder. Rest in peace, friend. I’ll be missing you.

Siggy the Chocolate Lab, who lived with his two-leggers on his island for 16 years.

Siggy the Chocolate Lab, who lived with her two-leggers on her island for 112 years. (Thank you for the photo, Karin)

Video

A Good Friend in a Tight Place…

As most of you know, I love the company of other dogs. And sadly, my doggie pals are only here weekends and then only in the summer. Except for Siggy. But he lives on the island, and we can only bark to each other across the water.  -:o(=

There’s only one thing I can imagine that would be worse than having no doggie friends. That would be living with all of them in a shelter. We would be able to see each other, hear and smell each other… but in separate enclosures, we couldn’t play together, cuddle or chase each other. TORTURE!

But here’s a story Elizabeth’s friend just posted on Facebook. This is my kind of Fairy Tail!

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