Dead fish and green water?

Explanations for recent phenomena observed in Forest Lake In recent weeks, several people have contacted the Comfort Lake-Forest Lake Watershed District (CLFLWD) to report fish kills and algal growth observed in Forest Lake. Read on to learn what’s behind these recent phenomena. Fish Kill: After conversation with the Minnesota DNR, watershed district staff have concluded…

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Paddle, Bike, Repeat: Four days on the Namekagon and St. Croix Rivers

We started our trip at the County Rd K landing (Namekagon River), near Trego, Wisconsin, and ended four days later at the Lower Tamarack landing (St. Croix River), 47-miles downriver. To avoid using a shuttle or bringing two cars, I brought my mountain bike along and rode back to our put-in at the end of each day to bring our truck and camping gear down to the next location.

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Rumor has it there’s a rumor in town

Tanners Lake is part of the Ramsey-Washington Metro Watershed District (RWMWD), and the district has worked hard to improve and protect water quality in the lake over the past 20 years. In fact, Tanners was one of the first lakes in Minnesota to be removed from the state’s impaired waters list (in 2004) after phosphorus levels went down and algae stopped being a problem.

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Adopt a storm drain in honor of Earth Day’s 50th Anniversary

On April 22, 1970, 20 million Americans — 10% of the U.S. population at the time — participated in teach-ins and rallies across the nation to advocate for an end to environmental destruction. The event was organized by Gaylord Nelson, a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, and was inspired by a string of environmental disasters, including…

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Feedback from local communities helps to shape Lower St. Croix 10-Year Watershed Plan

Learn more: Feb. 20 in North Branch or March 2 in Stillwater Over the past two years, 15 local government partners in Anoka, Chisago, Isanti, Pine, and Washington Counties have been working to create a shared watershed plan to guide collaborative work in the Lower St. Croix region for the next 10 years. Known as…

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Enjoying the St. Croix River and working to keep it clean

Picture, if you will, a woman serenely paddling down the St. Croix River on a standup paddleboard with a boy and a dog balanced on either end. The sun is warm, the water is calm, and all is right with the world.     Level: Expert Total time to complete: 5 hours   Instructions Step 1: Pack your car the night before. (No –…

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The Power of the Universal Experience

“Look!” I yelled backward into the house as I flung open the front door and ran barefoot out into our yard. “Charlie, Gary, come see!” Across the street a brilliant rainbow arched across the sky, perfectly framing the cross and brick of St. Paul Lutheran Church. Two blocks further down the road, the rainbow poured…

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Master Water Stewards offers a unique “Mini-Training” opportunity in 2019

When Susan Goebel moved to Woodbury a few years ago, she began looking for opportunities to make friends and get involved in her new community. Back in West Bend, Wisconsin, where she had lived for years, she had been a Town Clerk and a Town Supervisor. She worked as a volunteer coordinator, taught classes at…

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Finding ways to balance farming and clean water

A story of redemption 26 years ago, Brian Axdahl and his father bought an old sod farm near the St. Croix River and plowed the turf under with moldboard plows. The soil was compacted from years of poor management. Lakes formed in the fields whenever it rained, and runoff flowed to the river, carrying sediments…

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GreenCorps members prescribe a low-salt diet for Minnesota waters

Water softeners are a surprising part of the problem In 1961, the newly elected President John F. Kennedy launched a program to help mitigate poverty around the world and spread American ideas and goodwill. The Peace Corps program immediately captured the attention of young people around the country, and thousands of applications poured in for…

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