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1-1 Adventures in Terraforming : Up a Creek

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Jetty Jockey

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Today's update will feature the ongoing terraforming process in northwestern Middle Township. I've applied lessons learned and have

gone back and touched up a few tiles. I've also completed the Reed's Beach tile and a good portion of the terraforming north towards Goshen Creek. The Goshen tile is nearly complete, and if you look closely, you can see the beginnings of the road network .

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For a better look at the terraforming process, we're going to take a little trip down Bidwell's Creek, through the Cape May National Wildlife

Refuge. So grab a kayak, and don't forget to bring the sunscreen and mosquito repellent !

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We'll launch the kayaks a little north of Cape May Court House, at the Goshen Road bridge during high tide. The tidal range around here is about 5 or 6 feet so there's plenty of water. At low tide , there's barely enough water here to float a beer can . The falling tide will take us towards Delaware Bay without having to work too hard to get there.

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A little further downstream, the forest opens up to grassy meadows on either side of Bidwell's Creek. Many species of wildlife make thier home here, including deer, beaver and muskrat. In the spring and fall, migrating birds use this area as a stopping off point on thier annual journey. Other tributaries join the creek, strengthening its flow and making it broader.. To the south is Miller Pond.

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As we continue westwards, we pass Skeeter Island on our left. Here Bidwell's Creek is joined by Skeeter Island Creek. Despite the county's best efforts at controlling the mosquito population, we never seem to have any shortage of them. Now aren't you glad we brought the insect repellant?

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We've reached the Route 47 bridge.On the left bank is the Bidwell's Creek Marina, From this point to the bay, we'll have to share the waterway with other boats. Small pleasure craft as well as independent clammers and crabbers who work the bay for a living sail from here. Of all the Cape May County creeks that flow into Delaware Bay, only Bidwell's Creek and Dennis Creek are deep enough to be navigable by power craft as far upsteam as Route 47.

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Further downstream, the creek passes through the salt marsh. Broad expanses of grassland are shot through with hundreds of tiny creeks and ditches dug by the Mosquito Commission years ago. Rather than to drain the marsh, these ditches were intended to flood it, giving predatory fish access to ponds where mosquitos breed. It may look pretty from a distance, but beneath a thin crust of roots lie layers of soft mud and an occasional quicksand pit that make traversing these marshes on foot quite hazardous.

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We've finally reached the mouth of Bidwell's Creek, just in time to catch one of the spectacular sunsets over Delaware Bay. The jetty on the south keeps the shifting sands along the bayfront from shoaling and blocking the creek's entrance. Just go around it and pull the kayaks up on the beach. There's not much surf this far up the Bay. I hope you've enjoyed the trip !

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I had finished terraforming. the marshes between Bidwell's Creek and Goshen Creek, but when I obliterated the city tile to remove the name and reset the game calendar, SC4 (Deluxe) crashed and exited to desktop, leaving a blank tile in its place. This has happened to me twice before . I suspect a compatability issue between Deluxe and Windows 7.

REPLIES : Thank you all for your feedback. I welcome it ! I'm always up for any ideas, suggestions, comments, picture requests or (constructive) criticism you may send my way .

Reikhardt : I hope this meets your criteria for not being boring :)

n_wilson : I've done it before, just not on this scale. I feel I'm a bit better prepared this time around, and I have new tools such as Bing ™ maps ( with thier great bird's eye view) to allow me to add a far greater amount of detail than before.

tigeria : Thank you ! I have a week's vacation coming and plan on getting a lot more work done on this.

ringingdulcimer : Always glad to hear from another South Jerseyan . Any input you might have is welcome. If I can find my camera, I'd like to add some real-life pics to the journal. I think it'd give a point of reference to those who haven't been here.

While I'm working on this, I might as well put out my BAT wish list ..

PEG's CDK lots are great, but I really really REALLY wish the fishing vessels and Blackie's Boatyard provided industrial jobs rather than commercial . Just the small port I put in for the teaser is crushing commercial demand county-wide. Dirty industry would be fine, and more than realistic

Seafood Cannery - I can provide pics

Cape May and Hereford Inlet Lighthouses: A repainted version of the Barnegat Lighthouse would work just fine for the Cape May lighthouse. I can provide pics for the one at Hereford Inlet

Sand and gravel mining operations ( with jobs) . : Nothing special, a few pieces of heavy equipment and sand or gravel piles. Again, dirty industry would be fine.

Wawa convenience stores. You can't drive 5 miles in New Jersey without coming across one of these. Also the "Super Wawas" with large gas islands

I'm sure there's plenty more, I'll post them as they come to mind. Thanks in advance !


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Thanks everyone for your support !  Terraforming is progressing pretty rapidy at the moment, since I'm currently on vacation.  The first phase of this ( "Postcards") will try to recreate what's currently here. The area is primarily rural, with small towns and farms on the mainland sections. The barrier islands are more built up, but it'll take a stretch of the imagination to call them cities. So if you're expecting hi rise office towers and all that urbany goodness, you're going to be disappointed.  Future development is considered in a second phase of the journal, but that's some way off in the future. Still,  I hope you hang around for the ride. I'll give it my best shot.
-JJ-

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