There’s no better place or topic for a campfire talk than by the water that surrounds us. Be sure to sign up to our newsletter, otherwise enjoy!
Steephead valleys aren’t as famous …
Or as charismatic as a Florida spring.
Steephead valleys have a distinctive rounded shape
But they are similar in they are both groundwater fed. Unlike springs that appear in full force out of nowhere, emerging from a cavernous hold in the ground in the form of a “boil,” steephead streams are smaller in scale and at their upstream end pinch back to a vanishing point. And unlike a gully-eroded dendritic (i.e. branching) stream channel that depends on rainwater for its source, and accordingly erodes from top-to-bottom — a steephead valley contains a single stream that depends on groundwater seepage as its source. Grain by grain, that causes erosion to occur from the bottom-up, giving the ravines their trademark rounded and slumping shape. Another key difference: The gradient between its headwater and mouth are low.
What makes steepheads special? The steady flow and constant (cooler) temperature makes both the ravines and the streams home to endemic and rare northern plants. An endangered fish called the Okaloosa darter is only found in steephead streams. As for their location, they are found in isolated patches in the panhandle where the regional groundwater table and alluvial floodplain intercept.
What does it take …
To protect our water resources?
Water needs vision like never before
In word, vision. But vision alone is not enough. It requires activism and a willingness (and energy) to deliver the message to the people in their communities and in a way that communicates to their hearts and their minds. Lastly, it takes a sustained effort and getting everyone involved.
More about this speech: I wrote it in a fit of inspiration meant to be delivered in front of the campfire. It borrows heavily from other speeches, but also tries to cultivate its own organic voice and tenor. Importantly, I memorized the speech before actually putting it to paper. It was only in performing it, and listening to myself say it, that I refined the language and intonations, the later of which continue to evolve. There is a prequel to this speech. Maybe I have to starting thinking of a second part, too. BTW: I do have a powerpoint I often lead into after the speak, called “The Water Plan.” Vision is vital but persistence (and executing the plan) is the ultimate cure.
Water going the wrong way …
Isn’t as uncommon as you may think.
Campfire talk in its entirety
The caveat is the water is usually right.
Watch individual segments
Summary: It’s not often water rises this high in the swamp, ever – let alone in mid November when water is traditionally inching its way down. The result was a number of unexpected sights, and water flowing all over the place – even over roads. By the end of the day, I wanted to package it up into a leisurely campfire talk for everyone to enjoy.
Thanks for joining the campfire!
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as seen on YouTube