In spite of the drought, the juniper had a bumper crop of berries.
They look like berries, and are called berries, but they are actually
miniature cones with tight, fleshy scales
A view across the corner of the salt flats.
The Great Salt Plains Lake and salt flats.
The Great Salt Plain Lake was down so low there was not enough water to get within four feet of the sill of the dam. The dam is a stepped structure, almost like a salmon ladder. Two of the three sections were dry concrete. The wetlands, which the fowl depend on for food and rest on their migration, were totally dry. The tracks of deer could be seen where they had moved up and down the river bed looking for water.
This is the Salt Fork River, a branch of the Arkansas River. All
that's left is some salt residue.
The killdeer seek food in the few remaining brine puddles.
Ironically, I'm parked in an area for fishermen. I'm also standing in
the middle of what should be the Salt Fork River, north of the
Great Salt Plains Lake. The only thing in the riverbed now are sandburs.
As the river dies, so do the businesses that depend on it. Red's Corner
Mini-Mart provided live bait, ice, cold beer, and tackle for the
fishermen that have taken their business elsewhere.