I decided to sleep in til 9am today as I really needed to rest up and I knew my only plans for the day were to kayak and grill teriyaki chicken. What a great plan that was as I opened my eyes and enjoyed a little snuggle time with both my chihuahua's before rolling out of bed. After my feet hit the floor, I glanced out the window to find 7 bluejays and a bunch of chipmunks fluttering and running around my yard. I instantly knew it would be a great day!
I got the boyz out, showered up, then loaded the kayak on the car before taking the boyz for a short walk. After, I proceeded to the boat launch site just below the waterfalls in Ticonderoga, on LaChute River. I launched my kayak and quickly realized that the water was moving rather rapidly. I wound up kayaking the 2 miles down LaChute River towards Lake Champlain with no effort at all. Actually, all I had to do was steer. This made me rather nervous about the return.
On the way to Lake Champlain I came across two Green Heron (very early in the trip) and a whole lot of dragon flies. As I was in the bay just before Lake Champlain I could see a bald eagle in a dead tree I always hoped to see an eagle in. Somehow though, I was so in awe with the dragonflies that I did not rush to get there.
Eventually, I did paddle out to that tree and the adult bald eagle sitting in it was so patient as I maneuvered my way around and got photo's from many angles. Eventually, I had gotten to the best angle (with the sun almost behind me). I got so many shots and was so thrilled. After about 15 minutes, the adult eagle flew off and I continued on my way. At first I found 2 of the recently fledged eagles and then out of nowhere the third one joined the two that were already hanging out there. I sat and watched the three fledglings for well over 2 hrs before things got interesting.
Finally, one of the adults flew into the area of that dead tree and landed on the ground near it. Two of the fledglings headed in that direction and landed over there. I did my best to make my way over for some photo's. I got some, but do wish I had gotten a little closer. After, the adult and the two fledgelings headed back over to the area where I had initially found the two fledglings and bobbed around Lake Champlain for two hours (fighting the winds to stay as still as possible).
After all the eagle activity ended, a Great Blue Heron landed pretty close to me and hung out for a long time, letting me get so many shots. I watched him fish and catch these itty bitty fish (probably tadpoles) before it eventually flew off and then I spent at least another hour with another Great Blue Heron who hung out and fished so close to me and just below the adult eagle. I know eagles don't go after Heron, but I kept hoping as I was positioned so well. I know that is a bit morbid, but I would have gotten some really awesome shots. Yes, honest words from a wildlife photographer.
Eventually, I decided it was time to head back (even though I really didn't want to because I was having so much fun). The return was really tough as I was working against that tide that made my trip to Lake Champlain so easy. I ran into the guy who works at the campground with his wife and two kids. I chatted with them for a a few minutes and learned that the reason the water was moving in such an uncharacteristic way was because the Hydropower Plant in Ti was running. Wow, that was the first time in 4 years I've ever experienced that. The two mile return was brutal. A few times I considered calling the campground owners to come and rescue me, but I didn't because I knew with strong will and determination I would make it.
During the brutal trip I came across two Osprey's with really big fish. And, to my surprise, I did finally make it back. And now I'm going through my pics (over 1,100 shots I took while kayaking) and am sharing my pic of the adult on the dead tree (the tree I've always hoped to find and photograph and eagle or an osprey).