I took advantage of a seemingly rare break in our recent nasty weather to get out to the southern border of the ‘hood. That welcome excursion provided a few observations and insights—not enough to warrant individual articles, but this being a slow news weekend, I thought I would lump them into a rambling post for you.
Oil Spill on Lake Union
In my recent former life, I responded to oil spills for NOAA. When I heard through the grapevine that there was one in my own back yard here in Wallingford, of course I had to go have a look. This was a release of marine diesel at Northlake Shipyard, on the west side of Gasworks Park. It was reported on Friday, and cleanup began that evening. I went down there on Saturday to have a look, with cleanup activities continuing. Most of the red-dyed diesel oil seemed to be cleaned up, with only sheens still visible. The strong winds from the south helped to keep the spilled oil close to the shoreline, where it could be contained with booms and cleaned up with oil skimmers and sorbent materials. The Coast Guard and the state Department of Ecology are investigating the cause.
Gasworks Park Encampment De-camped
The last time I had strolled down to Gasworks, probably in the summertime, there was a large and established encampment under the sheltered area near the play structures and restrooms. I was surprised to find that it was completely gone. There were lots of men hanging out in the picnic area, but no tents or other living quarters. The park itself was pretty heavily populated with people and geese, who, no doubt like me, wanted to get some fresh air while the getting was good.
Gasworks Park COVID testing site
As I circled through the park, I noticed this lonely guy, Hayden Braun, sitting under an awning in the northwest corner of the parking lot doing PCR COVID testing for an outfit called Curative.com. He said that the site offered testing from 8:00-2:30 during the week and Saturday 9:00-4:00. Usually, it’s a van that houses the testing. According to the Curative site, turnaround time for results is 1-2 days.
Burke-Gilman Tree Question
As an add-on to Alan and Margaret’s recent Wallyhood post about trees, I thought I would ask this question about a conifer tree along the Burke-Gilman trail that I have admired for some time. Does anyone know what species of pine this is? I do have an app on my phone for (allegedly) identifying plants, but once again, it confirmed its notorious unreliability (it told me this was a pine). Very long needles and large, spikey grenade-size cones. It’s really a gorgeous tree that stands between the sidewalk-biking split in the trail.
Only one syringe observed today, along the upper part of the trail by Pacific.