One of the features I was tasked with locating and charting last week was what is shown here; a mountain springhead.(in this case a "Seepage Spring"). A springhead is formed when groundwater(from an underlying aquafer) becomes shallow in depth due to the underlying geology whereupon the water then permeates through the substrata (usually porous sandstone or dolomite) and onto the surface.
From here it will typically create its own meandering path; becoming a small feeder stream that will then eventually become a tributary to a larger stream or brook.
These systems will then find their way into larger drainage, riverine and reservoir systems.
These springheads are vitally important to not only flora and fauna, but to our own survival; as most are primary sources for our own drinking water.
Unfortunately these systems are extremely fragile in that construction and urban development can negatively impact them, and in recent times, especially here in the Northeast, oil and natural gas exploration via well boring often alters the path or altogether destroys these systems by either impacting substructure, or by injecting pollutants in the form of fracking fluid directly into the aquifer system itself.
Given some of my life experiences I have developed a profound reverence for water and anyone who has gone without it for a period, or doesn't have ready access to it, never looks at it the same way again. Its importance to human existence and survival cannot ever be understated, or taken for granted. It's painfully tragic and speaks to man's stupidity that in the quest for wealth we are destroying the one resource that not only our lives, but all life depends upon.
A saying attributed to Chief Seattle sums it up best when he said, "When the last tree is cut, the last fish is caught, and the last river is polluted; when to breathe the air is sickening, you will realize, too late, that wealth is not in bank accounts and that you can’t eat money.