Thursday, March 9, 2023

I'm Back

With some time out of town followed by the late arrival of winter, I have been out of the canoe for all too long. Several days of high winds has eased to a sunny and pleasant day. I put in on the Mattabesset, at the usual spot. This is a good move because the wind is faster than the prediction and much of the trip is well forested on a narrow river.

The water is lower than I expect for this time of year. I head upstream, which will keep me in the trees. The water looks shallow, but that is just the clarity of cold winter water. There is some current, which is accelerated at the usual places; shallow bars that I knew were coming. I turn back at the abandoned train bridge. At this water level, a short portage is necessary to go higher. And, I know that another 1/4 mile up there is a shallow section that will be too fast to paddle against.

I am not ready to quit when I get back to my start point, so I continue down to the next sharp left hand bend. There is some open marsh there and I often see Great Blue Herons and sometimes an Eagle.

Beaver bank burrow


When I get there, I spot four Wood Ducks and six Common Mergansers. The beaver bank burrow at this spot has been added to and there is a cache of winter food nearby. As I position the canoe to photograph the bank burrow, a mature Bald Eagle flies in. It is heading down the river when it performs a graceful wing-over and lands above me. It is a rather small Eagle, so I imagine that the white head and tail feathers are recent acquisitions. After a few photos, I turn and head out.


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