Ain't nuthin like ridin' a fine horse in a new country - Augustus McCrae – Lonesome Dove

Sunday, August 7, 2016

The Destruction of Development~

Last night - just at midnight - we woke to the sound of the Coyote's howling.  Loud & mournful - I knew - without knowing - that they were voicing their shock & sorrow at the loss of their habitat.   With those howls fresh in our minds, we decided to hike up late this afternoon.  Only a few feet in - the trail was gone.  We were confronted with a scene - surreal in it's stark contrast to what once was...  Soon, there will be 600 residential homes here, residents complaining when the coyotes take their pets & deer eat their flowers.
Where my entry trail was~
Utter destruction in every direction.
Trees cut & stacked ~
 It was like walking through a place so strange - somewhere I'd never been, rather than a place that I've known as well as anyone for over twenty-five years.
Butch - where my trail came out on the intersection~
 To the south - a line of heavy equipment - ten in all.  Hundreds of trees down & stacked.
Lined up & ready to go~
 This trail now a graded roadway - went to the first section of the development - where the tree was across earlier this year.  Post~
The gate now~
The development is moving from south to north along the east side of the power lines.
Toward the power lines, west~
 Above was my main access to the outflow of the wetland & on up to Cottonwood Cathedral.
My trail is between the trees ahead~
 We walked all the way to the end of the grading - the trail is still there at the bottom of the wetland, but I'm sure not for long.
Right past the edge~
 A stake marks the clear-cut boundary - for now.  Trees felled here too, as close to the wetland as they could possibly get.  Several had fallen over the boundary line.
Looking back the way we'd come~

 Back at the intersection, we walked north.
Butch walking north~
 Parallel with what's left of the woods, where houses will be built.  Actually toward our street.
Looking east from the road Butch is walking above~
 I was surprised to see the drainage basin dry & marked for houses!
What was a drainage basin~
Below, full of water~
 Evidently, they no longer need water retention.
Cutting through toward 116th~
 Another surprise, to see that a dozer had gone through from the end of the graded road toward the top of our street.  I've not been able to ride up our road for years - due to the adjoining landowner with the pit.  Originally we were told the development would not come through here - but now - who knows?
Looking south, back the way we'd come~
 As we headed back to the way we'd come in, to say that my mood was subdued, would be an understatement.  I couldn't help but notice the little things. 
Butts in the dirt...
 Butch had to ask me where we'd come through. 
The cedar log marks the way~
 To think of all the land that isn't wooded, doesn't have the headwaters of three different streams, doesn't have fresh water wetlands & doesn't have wildlife...   Somewhere else besides here?  This last remnant of the forested land that was our buffer from the ever-spreading Marysville. 
The land - looking from west to east~
Since this image is old, it only shows the first of the development.  Now, everything along the west edge of the large wetland is gone.  It's probably not worth the effort to try to get through - but I may try.  I know that the Cathedral will go down soon - there's the trail soon to be road that they will cut right through it.
Marysville development moves east~
 Combine this mess with the new development just five-miles up Burn Road, then the 300 houses that are planned for the old Thoroughbred farm near the Granite Falls High School.  Our narrow country roads were never built for the kind of traffic that we already have, not to mention the cars that all these developments will add.  Our rural lifestyle has lasted a long while - just not long enough...   Snohomish County has sold out our rural - five acre status - for rural cluster development dollars...


  1. I feel your pain. Growth took over our old rural neighborhood so fast that we didn't know what hit us. We had construction trucks turning around in our U-shaped driveway and parking in our front lot without our permission. We had to get the police involved because no one was showing respect for the existing residents. Then the recession hit and for years we had an abandoned, half-built subdivision up the street from us. It's worse when they take your riding space away.

  2. Tragic. I think I'd just stay away. When your cathedral goes it is just not worth the pain to see, better to remember all those glorious rides....

  3. And they call this progress???
    Only people who want money & a disregard for nature do this kind of thing!! V.V.

  4. The rural citrus ag community (Riverside Ca.) I grew up in went from orange groves to houses in the 1970's and 1980's; an area that was heaven on earth in the '60's is now another stucco & tile roof cookie cutter blob. I moved up to Washington 16 years ago to escape this crap, but it will follow me forever...


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