Thursday, May 06, 2010

Water for a thirsty region

Water is a precious commodity out here in the arid West -- one reason that these old rusty tanks in the outback are so poignant. The pair are located along the unpaved county road that parallels the Santa Maria River between US93 and the Bagdad Road and I would guess that they are still in use.

Also in the outback: above, in the desert near Bumblebee ... and, below, in the forest near Crown King.

Since dust is a no-no per the EPA (even in the Arizona desert -- huh?), portable water tanks are the first sign of a new construction project. The idea is to spray precious water when those bright yellow machines start moving earth.

This tank is near the railroad in Hillside; maybe it isn't for water -- but I recall the era of steam locomotives when special water dispensers were strategically located along the track.

Ash Fork's city water tank; the town's water comes from two reservoirs that had been created many years ago to serve the Santa Fe.

One of several water tanks maintained by the city of Prescott, visible from SR69.

These are also city tanks on a hillside just east of Willow Creek Road. The long zoom shot is from my balcony, where all I can actually see are the tall antennas; when I first viewed the image, I was quite surprised by the water tanks.


AZ said...

I grew up in an area where running water wasn't always available, I did my share of toting water by the bucket full to do laundry and to take a bath. I shudder when I see people letting the faucet run full blast for no reason, I know how much effort it takes to carry a 3 gallon bucket from the well to the house. Nothing makes you more aware of water conservation than living with no running water.

Tales from the Birch Wood. said...

That is so helpful.

Also, even in wet climates water is becoming precious.
Many houses in Dublin were without supplies in January, 2010, as the main system has so many leaks.

Hope all is well.

Steve said...

I'm sure lots of folks look at the water tanks and wonder what they are. It has to be pumped up first before gravity can dispense it. That would make an interesting addition to the story. How they actually do it.

Granny J said...

AZ -- I've been fortunate -- never had to tote water, tho I recall that down on Baseline Road 70 years ago, my grandparents' water came from a well powered by a windmill. The watr was used for everything except for drinking.

birch -- I can believe infrastructure problems in Ireland, never a shortage of water!

steve -- now you've got me really puzzled. Those outback tanks are in turf that is off the grid, but I definitely didn't see any associated windmills, which would be the usual source for pumping water. I guess that the water is trucked in when livestock is moved to the area.

Antipodean Curmudgeon said...

There was a sort of shower under that tank. I vaguely remember taking a shower there with Pop. The shower head was attached to a gardenhose slung over a wooden beam.


Boonie said...

Only Granny J could get us to look at something that we see all the time, but never really see.

Granny J said...

bro -- I presume you're talking about the pump house out on Baseline Road...right? I never used that facility--always took a tub bath, but then showers started out as guy things way back when.

boonie -- all I can say, Boonie, is that there are so very many things to see out in the world.

Anil P said...

With water so scarce it must take much water to keep the dust down at construction sites!

Anonymous said...

I really like that first shot the best. The rusty tank, the rickety platform, the dry brush below, the swooping trees, the distant hills; the whole thing has an aesthetic that appeals to me.
So much reflected light, even the shadows are illumined. Looks hot there.

Anonymous said...

I'm a worry wart.

GrannyJ hasn't posted since May 8th, and OmegaMom since May 2nd.

How are things?

I'm beginning to worry....

~Anon in AV.

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