When the sun breaks through, the glint of last night's rain, and last night's dew, and the last high tide sparkles on the spartina grass spears that line the river, and it comes together with a spiced aroma of salt mixed with mud and decay and the exhalations of the marsh plants.
I come across the remains of a wooden boat just short of the railroad bridge. It once had an engine of some sort - the pipes and metal fittings lie mixed with the wood planks and ribs. It was hidden below the tide on previous trips. It is not the only change that low tide brings. Already, I am noticing a greater diversity of birds than I have before.
I get, perhaps, a half mile past my previous high point on the East River before I run out of water. But, running out of water coincides with running into birds. I turn back short of my geographical goal with two green backed herons, a great egret, a snowy egret, a great blue heron, a pair of lesser yellow legs, some sandpipers and an osprey all in sight. I could stay, but the tide is not quite full out and to stay here some 3 or 4 miles upstream from the sea means staying for 3 or 4 hours, until the lag in the tide makes it back up here.
|Little Blue Heron|
With unexpected time and energy, just short of the put in, I turn up the Neck River, new water to me. It runs closer to houses, but it is narrow and meanders always staying in the salt marsh. The bird life is quite plentiful as well, with numerous osprey along with the variety of wading birds.
|pair of young osprey|
It has been a great day for bird sightings.
|Mouth of the Neck River|
For Zebulon Pike - I traveled 13-1/2 miles during 5 hours, shot 105 photographs but no deer.
Birds - whimbrel, black headed gull, osprey, willet, kingfisher, green backed heron, great blue heron, snowy egret, great egret, semi-palmated plover, lesser yellow legs, Canada geese, mallard, short-billed dowitcher