Greg and Leigh Schwartz’ property borders Little Sewickley Creek near Walker Park in Leet Township. Most years the shallow, rocky creek will freeze over enough to hold the weight of deer. That was evident by the tracks in the snow across the icy stream. Greg and Leigh were spotted Sunday by many motorists who were driving along the road which shares the creek’s name. I was there with my camera looking for photo opportunities when the unusual sight of people “sweeping the creek” caught my attention.
The couple was gracious enough to give me their names and explain their behavior – they were testing the ice and clearing the snow with brooms in preparation for the kids to skate. They had swept clear about 20 x 30 feet of ice. Just beyond their small make-shift ice rink were large patches of breaks in the ice on either side where the mid-day sunshine made the snow and ice gleem.
Sadly, Greg said, “this will all be gone by Tuesday.” I’m sure this brief winter window to skate on the creek has already become a cherished memory for their kids because the grown-ups seemed to be having a great time preparing for it!
Little Sewickley Creek is a tributary to the Ohio River in Allegheny County. Whereas Big Sewickley Creek is stocked with trout, Little Sewickley Creek has wild trout that naturally reproduce.
The Sewickley Creek watershed eventually empties into the Mississippi River via the Youghiogheny, Monongahela, and Ohio rivers.