A Solo Somo Paddle

This year I haven’t been kayaking as much as 2020. Some is due to weather issues. Some to laziness. Some because of photography burn-out. A temporary condition, but it strikes me sometimes and I get over it eventually.

I did get over to the Somo river in July though and while I didn’t take as many photos as I usually do, I found a few things to point the camera at.

My very first osprey! I missed the opportunity to get it diving, but managed a couple of sitting shots. They’re not the best, but I have to start somewhere. Even though they are near people and boats all the time, I found this one to be more skittish than the resident bald eagles. I got too close an it flew from this tree to another.

Osprey stare

Osprey sway

Then off overhead – I can’t believe I caught it.

After that excitement I decided to go down into a back channel I’ve never been in before. It was turtle paradise apparently and a few of them were sunning on lily pads. Only the small ones, but so cute! I’ve never noticed this behavior before, probably because I’ve always scared them away before I could so I was really happy to see and photograph it. Slow and stealthy paddling ensued, but this was the only area I caught them doing this. Maybe just a local fad, lol.


Others found more traditional places to soak up the sun. This one on the stump was only 3 inches long.


I also went to see the resident eagles. There is a nest right on the edge of a quiet place out of the main channel and I hoped some would be around. Boy were they. First dad –

Somo eagle

I think it’s dad based on size. Females are larger and I got a glimpse of her later, but no photos because she was mostly behind the branches here where junior is perched –

The nest is slightly higher and to the left in these shots. All was well for a while until mom came in behind and they both started calling to each other. In his excitement to see her or get some food, junior started flapping and trying to turn at the same time. The result was that a wing got snagged in a branch and the youngster panicked. I’ve never heard so much yelling. The kid was hollering, mom was hollering. Finally the juvenile got its wing free and flew off down the back of the tree, all the while screaming its head off.


I have no idea if this was its first flight out of the nest or what, but it could have been judging by the timeframe and the general ineptitude. Poor thing will need therapy. Both eagles continued to yell for a while and I could hear them change positions behind the trees. I didn’t see them again and eventually they were quiet. Dad had already flown off in the opposite direction prior to this and I didn’t see him again either. Next year I’ll try to get there earlier in the year and maybe get some nest behavior like feeding.

Frosted whiteface

I paddled here again in September, but that’s another post.

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