We don’t normally have a beach at the bottom of our property.

The level of our lake is lowered every winter, usually by about three feet I believe. Apparently this is done to control the growth of aquatic weeds in the shallow water – the freezing winter temperatures freeze the roots and kill the weeds. It also allows residents to do repairs to their docks. This lowering or “draw down” as it’s called is controversial because it means that for some residents their lovely water view becomes a mud flat during winter. It doesn’t affect us much as our house is high and we still see the water as normal. From the dock you notice that the lake level has gone down though.

This year, however, a very old valve needs to be replaced and to get to it the lake level has been lowered about seven feet. This has made a big difference. From the house we still see water, but now there’s a strip of beach (you can’t see it from the house) between us and the water. The steps from of dock, which used to got down to the water now open onto the beach.

This is really quite interesting (particularly since it doesn’t affect our view). We can now take the dog for short walks along the beach. He loves it.

I decided to give the Sony Alpha 500 another go. I like the feel of the camera.  I like the weight in my hands (but not to carry around) and I appreciate having the buttons ready to hand rather than having to hunt around in menus as I have to on the Nex.  But I’m not wild about the lens I’m using with it. It’s the old Konica Minolta AF DT 18-70mm f3.5-5.6 that came as the kit lens with my Maxxum 5D.

Barring unforeseen circumstances the work on the valve should be finished this week.  Hopefully they will then raise the lake level again – at least to its normal winter level.  I’ll miss the beach though.


Rocks and old tree roots


Sunken rowboat


Zebra mussels on a rock


This used to be a lake


Old tree branch




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