Monday, August 13, 2012

A Day Off

A rare weekday off for just myself today. So while Louise was diligently at work preparing for the fall university session, I spontaneously decided to start the day with a quick paddle up our home waters of The Gorge. See, Louise? I can be spontaneous!
Whatta ya mean this isn't what you meant?

Anyway, I had barely started when I spotted something off to my left.

Yes, a heron. And I'm going to warn you now. It's going to be another one of those posts filled with heron pictures. They're obviously doing well this year on the Gorge, and are making a comeback in Beacon Hill Park as well, despite being virtually wiped out there by eagles a couple of years ago.

Okay, let's get the rest of the heron pictures out of the way. I passed a couple more as I kayaked up the Gorge towards Portage Inlet.
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I passed under the bride into Portage Inlet....
GOPR3973 the early morning sun beamed down. We've had some hot days during the last month or so. Yesterday was a scorcher, today was shaping up to be another.

I spotted a bald eagle in a tree, or at least what I thought was an eagle. Scanning trees for a blob of white has been a good method for finding eagles, at least until now. Today I was fooled by a seagull.
Well played, seagull. You win this round.
Actually, you can see it in the trees in this shot if you look closely.

A few minutes later, I paddled through hundreds of floating white feathers. Since I had seagulls on the brains at that moment, I tried to imagine what would have caused all the seagulls in the area to suddenly go bald. No wonder he was hiding in a tree!
On further reflection, there just aren't that many seagulls around here. So unless the local swans had suddenly exploded for no good reason, I'm guessing the culprit here is geese. There are a lot of transients heading south right now in addition to the locals, and I suppose they must molt or something. I guess. I dunno, who am I, Dr.Goose?
I soon encountered the local swans....
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....and since they obviously have not spontaneously exploded, my geese theory is looking better all the time.

Before heading back, I looked for some of the gelatinous egg sacks that we see on the sandy Inlet floor in the fall. As it was a low tide, I couldn't do a lot of exploring without bottoming out but I did spot a few of them.
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Not all of my animal encounters were with winged animals.
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As I returned to my put in, I saw the same heron that I saw when I launched, still working the same fishing spot.
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I don't know why he stayed there. I watched him for a long time and not once did he strike for a fish.

With that, the paddle came to an end. I need to figure out a way to not go to work tomorrow so I can paddle again!

Trip Length: 6.85 km
YTD: 100.10 km
More pictures are here.
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