|young bald eagle|
Salmon Cove looked open, at least as far up as I could see, but I found the preferred boat launch still eight inches deep in snow, just begging to trap my car a ways from the road. So, I put in a bit down river behind the opera house (yes, there is an opera house out here). Today, I'll head down river into the wind on my outward leg and into a section of the river that I've not seen.
From land, the far side of the river looked whole and continuous, but from the canoe I find myself paddling behind a couple wooded islands with an unseen passage that leads back into a tidal pond, which is still frozen over. It is still and quiet and the calls of a few Canada geese echo off the trees. It is a place to return to.
I pass the remnants of Gillette's trestles and cliffside bridges, wood with heavy metal plate reinforcements tumbled down the bluff to the waters edge. Gillette was a famous stage actor of the late 19th century. He built a bizarre "grotto" style "castle" up on the hill and had a miniature steam engine train that he could drive around his estate.
|one of Gillette's trestles|
I pass the Hadlyme ferry dock and enter Whalebone Creek. Each of the wooded meanders holds a couple dozen ducks - hooded mergansers, lots of wood ducks, and lots of ringnecks...more bird life in one spot than I have seen in a long time. They take wing as the bow of the canoe comes around each turn, so I keep the telephoto out on my camera and drift each bend.
|Lots of wood ducks|
|leaving Whalebone Creek|
I return upriver on a following wind that eases the paddle without causing concern.