Before the roads and culverts went in, a little spur of a creek used to drain from above Greusendorf park into the Mississippi above the Rapids. It ran along Donavan Drive and into Sylvan Bay.
Now, between a small pond in what we used to call the ”Farmer’s Field“ and the bay, there is a tiny patch of wetlands, full of a tangle of cedar trees, their roots mossy and lifted over patches of water (at times) on the one side, and a pleasant rise of maple, birch, popple, and whatnot on the other. Between these a small foot path runs, following the creek.
The place is criss-crossed with all sorts of animal trails – deer, dog, rabbit, children – it is not unusual to find a deer peering back along the foot path, not terribly afraid. In fact, they are a nuisance to neighborhood gardeners, nibbling most anything that is planted. Foxes dart across midnight streets, unkempt and low to the ground, hunting rabbits or frogs or mice.
The birch trees are dying throughout the area. Some sort of blight, I suppose. Their sad carcases stand out bright and white in the spring, before the greening brush covers them up.