Letters for the May 20 Edition

Proposes Big Spring Branch be restored



The Fincastle Garden Club had good ideas and intentions when it made the Big Spring yard to be one pretty spread, but time has proved, after many years, to have created a swampy area. Mother Nature has to be recognized in all things eventually.

I propose that Big Spring Branch be returned to its original state. The branch was originally about six feet wide with a water flow of about three feet wide. The water ran from the big rocks to the bridge. The water flow will be very slow at first, but it will eventually regain its flow over time. The stream was never deep, about three to four inches at most, but fast flowing due to its elevation.

Some of the nearby neighbors also propose that the pond should be drained. As I remember, it was constructed to allow a playground and fishing spot for children. It seems to have outlived its intention and has become a rather smelly, mosquito-infested area to its neighbors. The pond should be drained, according to most of its nearby neighbors, and returned to its natural beautiful state.

This is not to demean any of the Garden Club’s work because it worked well for many years. Thus, children would once again be able to play and wade in the Big Spring Branch and catch tadpoles, crawfish, minnows and other spring critters and practice “catch and release.”

Some have suggested relocation of the tall, triangular information sign from its present location to an equally legible location so as not to interfere with weddings and other social events that wee conducted during the summer months. These things were fun gathering places before the moisture began to interfere.

The original streambed should be followed as closely as possible, starting at the drain near the present bridge and followed south to the pipes. The pipes were about two feet above the bottom of the original spring bed (to allow room for buckets to be used to fetch water from the little bridge).

Fun and safety should be our first concerns for the children.

As far as draining the pond, it can be done in stages into its original streambed and then filled back with its dam material to its original state and beautiful area.

Who knows? Volunteers may feel the cause to help in some areas to help the project with muscle power, donations of time and equipment or money donations to the Town of Fincastle for earth removal.

Once it gets going, it will go, you can bet on it!

Bob Waid


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