Friday, December 17, 2010


Typically there are the usual: deer, quail, Canada geese. Today I got to see something special.

tiny bad photo of bald eagle!
One last clear day! I thought yesterday was the last, and wasn't really prepared to ride, but I rushed out of work and saddled up Major. He was looking forward to going out, maybe he was sensing the impending week of rain, and we trotted up the road. He loves the lake trail, and I let him move out. The lake is at least 5-6 feet lower than Sunday from the water releases, so muddy shoreline was more apparent. At one point I was admiring the view and saw a speck of dark on a rock in the lake. With a white head. I thought it was one funky duck, but as I looked closer he was much larger. I realized it was a bald eagle! I've never seen one at the lake (or anywhere else either). I also realized how far away he was, and that he was huge! I tried taking a photo, but camera phone has no real zoom, one time I wished I carried a real camera. I know the bald eagles overwinter in Cache Creek, but that is a ways from here. Maybe he was just passing through and saw some tasty fish.

I've seen a golden eagle before (who was huge and gorgeous and spooked the pony I was riding who then dumped me) but I'd love to see more bald eagles. I'll have to keep an eye out. The rest of the ride was good, Major wanted to move out sometimes a bit too much, but was rateable most of the time. Almost home we had to cross a muddy (but safe) area. We crossed and coming towards us on the trail was a gorgeous coyote. Full bushy coat and tail, finding some good hunting in the field it looked like. Major and I have no worries of coyotes, and the coyote passed up and went to the muddy area, clearly not wanting to get his legs that dirty (4-6 inches deep of water and mud).

I was so glad I'd decided to ride out, to have one more day before the storms. One more day, one more ride, I think that is what most of us hope for.

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