I got the liner in a couple weeks ago, but I wasn't happy with the way it was sitting. So I ended up removing it then recontouring the bottom of the pond. I wanted the lowest point to be dead center in the bridge and slightly to the side so that it would be easy to use a dip net to clean out the bottom debris, you know...all the leaves, twigs, and fish muck that normally ends up on the bottom of ponds. I sloped the bottom of the pond so that everywhere was heading toward that low spot. After being satisfied with the results, I carefully replaced the liner. Well, that took me hours. Could have gotten the liner back in in 10 minutes if I didn't care about a hundred holes in the liner, but I'm one of those picky people who insists that their pond liner should hold water. :)
So....I got the liner in and guess what, it rained almost an inch. Egads. I hadn't had time to stretch the liner in order to get the major folds and wrinkles out. So yesterday I carefully scooped all the water out. Rather than take a chance of a repeat, I immediately tugged, pushed, massaged, and kneeded the liner into the shape I wanted, getting it as smooth as I could. And just I time too, because last night it rained almost 2 inches! Actually that was good. I worked on tugging the liner here and there and managed to get more wrinkles out and stretch the liner into place.
As you can see, a heavy rain blows tree leaves into the pond. I expect that. No problem. I plan on netting some out every week and adding them to the garden. I figure if I do a bit each week it will prevent the pond from becoming an eventual bog. Plus the leaves/fish poop combination should work well for the garden.
Tomorrow I'll run a hose from the house catchment tank overflow, so that any excess water can be channelled to the new pond. And I'll add numerous buckets of pond water from one of the already established ponds in order to introduce the micro organisms and algae that the pond needs to become balanced. As the pond fills I'll be stretching the liner until it doesn't stretch anymore. Then I'll use a cable to tie the liner permanently into place so that it cannot slip if the pond water level goes down for some reason......such as pumping it out to water the garden during a drought. I'm also going to cut off some of the excess liner material (the liner is for a much taller tank) so that I can use it to create a waterfall. That's a project that should be fun.
Now that the pond is filling, I'll work on completing the sides. Haven't decided yet exactly how it will turn out, so we'll see.