Sunday, July 12, 2015

The Salmon, the Moodus and Pine Creek

We put in somewhat early at the bottom of Salmon Cove, the usual spot, on a day that promised to be a bit too warm by early afternoon, a fact that influenced my decision as the Salmon has some shade, particularly on the few short tributaries that feed into it.  I've never seen anyone up in those smaller rivers and creeks, so there is an escape if we find ourselves un-alone.

We find four osprey at the first nest, an adult outside perched on a branch and three chicks inside.  The chicks are large and must be nearly ready to start working their wings. 

We follow the southeast shore tucked under the hillside forest and note the number of fish rising to the surface out in the middle of the cove.  The day is still, no wind, little noise, few boats and those are mostly dippers in kayaks puttering along some distance from us.
a segment of the complicated hover motion

At the mouth of the Moodus, we watch an osprey hunt for about 15 minutes.  It hovers, circles, soars and repeats that pattern making four empty talon dives during the time without stopping to perch and rest.

The Moodus is plenty deep with the high tide and we ease our way the 3/4 of a mile up to Johnsonville where the stream goes shallow.   We find a submerged beaver dam along the way.  It looks to be old, but I don't remember it from past trips, so I'll have to watch and see if it is a new dam just getting started.

We head up the Salmon River from the top of the cove and take one more side trip up Pine Creek, again and easy paddle with the high water.  As with the Moodus, we follow that stream until it goes shallow where it comes out of a steeps sided valley.
Returning down the cove, we push kingfishers along fairly often...hearing the rattle of their calls without seeing them until we get too close, and off they go ahead in their bobbing flight.

And by now, S is about as relaxed as S can get.

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