Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Required Paddling

There's too much for me to do today, but a quick trip to the west end of #1 island is necessary. On my last trip out, it appeared that the great blue herons were about to congregate. For two years running, they have collected in a heavy concentration on #1 island, about 2 dozen in just 50 to 75 yards of shoreline.

I take the shortest portage down to the south lagoon. There is a stiff and cold wind out of the south although the precise direction is never clear in this spot. The wind curls and passes over and around the hills of Seattle to get here, so it can finally arrive from unlikely directions. It will be a short trip, that is for sure, as any paddling into the wind will be hard work indeed.

This is the osprey tree, although no osprey sits in it anymore, ever since the osprey perch fell off in a wind storm. But, it is a good landmark with a name that stuck. It's been standing dead for a long time and can be seen from a long distance.

When I get up to the west lodge I find 15 Canada geese milling about on it. Crazy time for the geese, they seem to be staking out turf even though they won't nest until May.

crazy time for geese

A few more yards and I reach #1 island finding only four herons which fly off well before they should. Nervous, I suppose. Maybe they congregated during the weekend when I was away, or its possible that it hasn't happened or is happening somewhere else. Nothing to do but come back again.

I grind my way back south so that I can paddle a little while longer in the lee of the beaver forests. Not much happens other than a quick chat with a man who was exploring the rougher edges of the marsh by foot. We both agreed that it was a fine day.

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