Apple blossoms spring 2014
The Lockett farm the first large historic house on Aragon Road coming from Battersea Road.
The left part with the center gable is the original house, the right part was added in the late 1900-s.
The Quintins’ century old orchard
The Graham Farm with shrubs in full bloom.
Across from the house is the memorial designated as the Cecil and Wilma Graham Park, a city owned area of 29 acres.
Mid summer. The fertile fields north of the Aragon Road yield abundant hay and other crops. All the land north of the road are designated Class A prime farm land, thanks to the deep clay that has been deposited by the glaciers and has become nutrient rich over the years.
Fall colours along the Aragon Road
An aerial view of Draper Bay on Colonel By Lake. Photo credit: Steve Hunt, former neighbour on Aragon Road.
Winter has arrived on the Aragon Road, all is quiet, most animals migrated south or are hibernating.
The foxes and coyotes are around as are the rabbits and other furry animals.
The orchard is dormant, waiting for spring to bloom…
We see our neighbours across the dormant fields.
And Colonel By Lake is frozen solid, children and adults enjoy the vast icy expanse for skating, hockey, cross country skiing and ice-sailing.
The Wolfe-Duffin century farm house, a Merry Christmas scene.
The enormous tree in front of the house close to the road is well over a century old it is among the oldest on the Aragon Road. It survided the xxx ice storm and the Ontario Hydro pruning immediately after the ice storm when crews came out from all over Canada and the US to restore power.
The “End of the Road House” another example of the several century old farm houses along the Aragon Road.
In the winter and in summer.
And Jim Keirstead’s oil painting of this house. Jim lives beyond the “end of the road”.
The milk house of the John Hogan farm at the “end of the road house”‘ and barn.
The same location with the milk house and the barn in the background. The Keirstead family restore the stone foundation and wall in 2010.
Colonel By Lake offers great beauty and an interesting biology.
Sunrise on Colonel By Lake
A lone fisherman enjoys the tranquility of the lake in the early morning hours
The skies during sunrise can be spectacular and are different each time
Two Great Blue herons, cormorants and a duck share a rocky outcrop in the north eastern part of the lake, near the canal leading to the River Styx.
In the background are some houses on the Isle of Man.
And here two blue herons share a ledge on Ester Head, a large rock outcropping on the shore of the lake, just opposite the Aragon Road
Ester Head as seen from the lake, in the last several years it has grown over with mosses, grasses and trees. Around 1980 it was bare rock, s sign of regeneration.
A family of Canada Geese, they hang around in groups of families with parents, juveniles from last year and the new brood.
And the ducks are more solitary but not alone.
Normally one cannot easily observe the fish in our lake, but here we see a pair of carp mating near shore in Draper Bay where the water is a around a meter deep and there are water plants to attach the eggs to and provide shelter. The time for spawning is late March, April or even June depending on the temperature of the water.
Another creature looking for a nice spot in our garden to lay her eggs. Snapping turtles are at risk, they must mature till about 15-20 years old before they mate, therefore the turtles survival depends on the older females. sadly they can easily be run over by a car if we don’t watch out for them when they cross the road looking for soft spots in side or ditches and berms for a nest.
The west end of Esther Bay is a wonderful secluded shallow bay, rarely seen or visited by humans; some of it it an be seen from the Aragon Road looking over Cecil and Wilma Graham Park.
Draper Bay looking west is much less secluded but offers much room for spawning fish and is frequented by different species of herons and shelters waterfowl nests. It is full of turtles, both the painted turtle and the snapping turtle. Beaver is occasionally building a den, and we have seen otters playing in and out of the water.
Looking south one can see another part of Draper Bay with a gazebo on the edge of the spit of land that juts out and separates the two sections of Draper Bay.
Towards Kingston Mills looking from Draper Bay we see a cluster of houses built on top of the rock outcropping.
This is Precambrian bedrock , the remainder of high mountains that have been eroded over billions of years.
Then around the corner of this rock formation there are these cute cottages.
A cottage from earlier days, just opposite of Kingston Mills, one of the most photographed and picturesque little buildings from simpler times.
The size of both cottages is just right and we can only hope that these two gems will not be expanded; it would affect the beauty of Kingston Mills .
The locks and surrounding area fall under Federal land use regulations and Parks Canada, since it is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, but the opposite cluster of homes and these two cottages are part of the City of Kingston and come under municipal regulations.
This rustic and ramshackle beauty was until 2013 tucked into a corner of the basin just opposite the locks.It is now replaced with a fixed and floating dock.
A rare historic photograph of Kingston Mills viewed from above to the north over Colonel By Lake with the railway bridge in the foreground. Buildings to the left of the blockhouse are no longer there.
An aerial view of Kingston Mills, late 1900-s, with at the bottom-middle the basin upstream of the weir and inlet to the generation plant, the first lock is at the middle of the photo, the swing basin is just above the middle with the second lock clearly visible. The lock-master’s house is at the right upper part of the photo, it is now a very nice museum, a must for children and adults alike.
In the background the steel CN-railway bridge with a train just arriving from the right.
Pleasure boating in the 1920s.
Photos Library and Archives of Canada
The dry basin upstream from the weir, the opening to the left. The metal screen to its right is the inlet for the generating station, built in the early 1920s when the original weir system from 1831 was remodeled and rebuilt to direct hydro power to the turbines of the generating station.
On the other side of this dam is the blockhouse and you can see two large diameter steel pipes feeding the water to the builidngs of the plant.
During the late winter and early spring run-off the power of the water that is spilled through the weir is immense. In addition the full capacity of the penstocks or pipes to the generating plant takes much water as well.
The same location in winter.
A midsummer sunset from Kingston Mills taken from the dyke just east of the locks, would it be nicer anywhere in the world?