I forgot my camera on our wilderness hike two days ago when the fog was beautiful over the river. Yesterday I remembered the camera, and my friend remembered her binoculars.
We were hiking for almost 2 hours. The beginning part is paved, easy, and a beautiful walk thru trees that meet overhead. As it gets closer to the river, the pavement ends, and the terrain is rough, difficult, and slippery if you hit a snow patch. I clocked over 3 miles on my FitBit, but should get extra credit because of climbing and descending hills
Part of the time we were standing still watching for the numerous hawks and hoping for another glimpse at a bald eagle. We saw him (her?) just once last summer gliding lazily over the river. Since then we've only found nests, but no sightings. The nests are HUGE. According to Wikipedia, they are the largest nest of any North American bird, up to 13 feet deep. There are quite a few in this park.
Finally we saw a large blob in a tree ahead. With the binoculars, the blob had a white head. Sure enough, the blob took flight as we approached. It flew in huge circles over our head, probably looking at the little Sheltie dog with us as potential food. Yes, we held on tight to little Missy. I was able to snap a few photos as he glided overhead. Wished I had carried in my tripod and could have snapped a shot while he was standing still. But what a glorious moment to look up and see an eagle flying right over you!!!
I heard a story one time of an eagle swooping down and stealing a photographer's camera. The eagle didn't get my camera or little Missy either.
It's an especially beautiful walk in the fall with the colored leaves, and in the spring with large meadows of Queen Ann's lace and chicory. (A few fall photos from my mid-October blogs.) But we're liking it now in the winter too.
We're talking about getting snowshoes. There's another park 13 miles away that has winter trails and rents both cross country skis and snow shoes. I tried cross country skis last year for the first time, but I'm a total klutz on skis. Maybe snow shoes? If I rent them and can walk in them, maybe I can get some for Christmas?
We want to keep walking all winter outside. Fresh air feels so great. The scenery is great. There are a lot of parks and natural areas in the county to explore. We're looking into one today that's 8 miles away which has a lot of hiking trails by another river, as well as nesting areas for sand cranes, hawks, and yes, bald eagles!!! It's snowing now as I look out the window, but maybe we can make it.