Sunday, September 14, 2014

September 14, 2014

Lake Wicwas was on the cover of Saturday's Laconia Daily Sun!  Well, not the body of water, but the steamboat "Wicwas", built and skippered by our very own Dave Thorpe. 

There is a nice article about the Lee's Mills Steamboat Meet, the oldest such meet in the country.  If you missed it you can find it on line at

Some parts of New Hampshire were treated to a rare atmospheric phenomenon on Friday night, the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights.  I looked for it, but either it wasn't visible from our area, or I didn't have a low enough view of the northern horizon.  But many people in the White Mountain region saw it and posted photographs.  Here is a picture taken at Chocorua Lake by Ron Phillips Photography.

You can see more of his photography at  Auroras are caused when ions that constantly flow from the sun in the solar wind are trapped by the earth's magnetic field.  When these ions collide with molecules in the upper atmosphere, the molecules are momentarily excited, and then release the energy as light.  There was a solar flare earlier in the week which provided a large flux of ions, making the aurora visible in lower latitudes than usual. 

Aurora are most prevalent around the spring and fall equinox, which is just a few days away.  Other sights of the equinox are more visible around the lakes region.  Tiny bits of color are starting to appear on the hills around the lakes, and in the marshes.
A few small signs of turning leaves

It will be a couple of more weeks before the foliage really starts to turn though. 

I discovered a new wild flower last week:  a pretty blue flower with an interesting name:  Showy Tick-trefoil.
Showy Tick-trefoil  (Desmodium canadense)

This plant looks a little like a lupine, and both are members of the legume family.  It is also a host plant to butterflies.  I expect the "trefoil" part of the name comes from the triplet leaves.

A couple of cold nights are in store for this week - the water will be cooling off quickly now.

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