Things are rockin’ at Marion Cove
Heaps of limestone around bridge are first stage for new observation deck
It’s commonplace at Marion Reservoir to see cars on Pawnee Rd. driving by Eastshore on the way to Cottonwood Point slow down as the northern point of Marion Cove comes into view.
With a small concrete “bridge to nowhere” as its signature feature, the isolated area is a good spot for occupants to spy an occasional heron or eagle.
Recent passers-by have likely noticed two piles of large limestone rocks by the bridge. Assistant lake manager Kevin McCoy said they represent the first step in creating another attraction for lake visitors.
“We’re basically adding rock to an old road grade because I want to develop an interpretive dock out there,” McCoy said. “That will get us access out to that point so my volunteers, rangers, and maintenance crews can build a wooden platform.”
Building up the roadbed also will help create a small wetland area between the bridge and Pawnee Rd., which in turn will attract a variety of different birds and animals.
“It’s a surprising little cove for birdwatching,” McCoy said. “It just seems like all those bits and pieces add up to a good opportunity.”
At normal conservation levels, the old bridge has been surrounded by water on all four sides. Once the roadbed has been reestablished, water will still flow underneath the bridge, McCoy said.
However, if too much water flows under the bridge, one of the local inhabitants might go hungry.
“It’s also where a beaver stores his food cache for the winter,” McCoy said.
Getting the road resurfaced and taking care of basic prep work before spring rains come around is McCoy’s immediate goal. The observation platform will come later.
“Depending on conditions, we’ll get to work on the dock the tail end of this year or first part of next year,” McCoy said.
Last modified March 22, 2018