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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I made it out to the Matanuska river today and was going to see if I could find any drift wood. I found this fallen over willow right on the back and hit the jack pot right off the bat. I picked these pieces, snapped a few shots, and was back on the road. Im going to start washing them and trying to get the last of the bark off tonight. The Matanuska river is feed by the Matanuska glacier so the water is super silty giving it a blue tint. The water is heavy in minerals so the driftwood is caked in this mineral slime stuff.
 

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Cool, cool photos! Do you have to worry about bears? I bet the mineral silt would be fine in a dirt tank!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I should worry about bears but I also cary a gun! So if a bear wants to try and ruin my drift wood hunt he would be poorly mistaken. Honestly their are bears and moose everywhere. They are a part of every day life up here.
 

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Sweet! Now I wish I was back up there.

I have a tiny piece of driftwood from the Matanuska that I managed to bring back - the "slime" does come off eventually, and under water the color looks similar to your average manzanita branch, eg. dark brown.
 

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I have always wanted to go to Alaska - others can have tropical islands! lol Post lots of pics ; )
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I will probably turn this thread into my journal for my revamp of my 56 gallon. I will be completely emptying it and starting over soon. as of right now it seems like a massive task but it must be done.
 

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Lovely wood!! I'm thinking about going on a manzanita hunt soon..
I love Alaska.. It suits me in nearly everyway shape and form... Unfortunately I live in SoCal... Which is like my location antichrist...
Well actually that would be Arizona.. No offense to anyone from Arizona...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
This is how the wood looks in my tank compared to how it was before. Still trying to decide if it looks better.
 

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You know I feel like a tard. Born and raised in AK and never really explored the shores of the Mat-Su. What access do you usually use?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Well I went to palmer, decided to take the old glenn highway until it crosses the matsu then I pulled over at the bridge (on the clock :p) and picked up the drift wood! Im already planning a trip down the kenai for rocks and driftwood.
 

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You should use the clay like silt from the rivers for aquarium sediment. Then cap with sand/gravel. The Matanuska valley is a great place to grow crops , in the summer......
 

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@Grogan: that sounds awesome. I can't wait to go driftwood hunting!! I think the main pieces I'm on the lookout for are birch or alder or something. Was thinking about going to some of the in town (Anchorage) lakes looking for native plants and such.

@Plantbrain, that is a great idea! And it will cut down on costs for really large tanks. I will definitely do this and start a journal in the upcoming year. (Tom Barr to the rescue again!)
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
You should use the clay like silt from the rivers for aquarium sediment. Then cap with sand/gravel. The Matanuska valley is a great place to grow crops , in the summer......
"crops" lol. yeah one tends to need a fire arm when heading out there. You always have to keep and eye out for the abominable Palin's :p

Hmm using the glacial silt as a base? Sounds interesting. It seems like there would be issues with the heavy amounts of minerals in the clay. Looks like I have a summer experiment.


@kristal 907

Good idea! Its alot of fun to collect your own. It always blows my mind that people will pay for the stuff. Its a great way to spend a weekend.
 

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"crops" lol. yeah one tends to need a fire arm when heading out there. You always have to keep and eye out for the abominable Palin's :p

Hmm using the glacial silt as a base? Sounds interesting. It seems like there would be issues with the heavy amounts of minerals in the clay. Looks like I have a summer experiment.


@kristal 907

Good idea! Its alot of fun to collect your own. It always blows my mind that people will pay for the stuff. Its a great way to spend a weekend.
If you go to the edge where there's a lot of Spagnum moss along a river/stream, just find that clay like silt, take a 5 gal bucket and shovel.
You want those minerals in the clay. I mean do not go where they do gold mining etc(eg Aleska)........but just use some common sense. If you see lots of plants growing, then there's a good chance that soil is pretty good.

That entire valley is pretty good for growing crops and gets warmer in the summer. I'll hopefully be up in the Brooks range this year.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
If you go to the edge where there's a lot of Spagnum moss along a river/stream, just find that clay like silt, take a 5 gal bucket and shovel.
You want those minerals in the clay. I mean do not go where they do gold mining etc(eg Aleska)........but just use some common sense. If you see lots of plants growing, then there's a good chance that soil is pretty good.

That entire valley is pretty good for growing crops and gets warmer in the summer. I'll hopefully be up in the Brooks range this year.
Well thanks Tom. If you do make it up here it would be awesome if you could head into our local shop. (Alaska Coral and Fish) My customers are always talking about your projects. The few of us that are doing planted tanks would really get a kick out of it. Plus I have salmon,halibut, and spot shrimp that I could give you.
 
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