Although I had reservations about heading into the woods under such windy conditions, knowing that I would be with two experienced men, I gathered my gear and headed out to find our meeting place. (Thank goodness for the GPS!!)
Pulling into a gravel driveway after hearing "arrived at 244," my first thought was I must be at the wrong place. I don't see Boss's truck. Looking down and more closely at the address and directions on my phone, a man suddenly appeared at my driver's side window. Startling me yet assuring me that I was at the right place and that "Boss" hadn't yet arrived, he invited me in to meet his wife. As he and I headed toward the front porch of the well kept, white colonial, "Boss" pulled in.
Chatting exuberantly with Dick and his wife I lost track of time and before I knew it, it was time for the three of us to head out. Following "the boys" across the clear field, it wasn't long before we crossed the bridge and entered the woods.
At the edge of the open field, I asked Dick if I could take a few shots of "the pond." Telling us that the pond was created because of the beaver's dam, it has now become an enormous sanctuary for water fowl such as Wood Ducks and Canadian Geese.
As our excursion continued, we passed through adequately spaced, healthy and abundant hardwoods. Forest regeneration is a great thing, yet it was when we began to climb the slope that the Japanese Barberry suddenly became cumbersome. Struggling to get through the Barberry and recurring swampy ground, the sign "Welcome to Middle Earth" that we had seen earlier on the trail now made sense.
Making our way to higher ground, our footing became more stable. No longer were my tall boots being sucked off by the deep wetlands, although the briers seemed to become taller and thicker.
Once on higher ground, the struggle with the barberry ended and we could almost pre-plan our descent to the edge of the pond, which is where the Eagle's nest was thought to be. Our goal was to find the precise tree, record it's GPS co-ordinates, map it as well as a proposed "observation" point that would not disturb the birds.
As we got closer to the water, Boss suddenly turned, pointed upward and to our NW and said, "There it is JP."
"Where? No way. It's so small, Boss. My nest was huge!"
"JP, think about it. Your nest was at least five years old. This is only a year old."
After he said that, it was as if the light-bulb in my brain lit...uh-duh.
Snapping away from all angles, estimating the height of the white pine, documenting the nest position to help determine the entrance along with a clear view from our designated vantage point, we recorded the GPS co-ordinates.
Now that our mission was accomplished, we could plant the next excursion for another reported sighting.
When I got home, I checked my FitBit. During the trek that I thoroughly enjoyed, I had climbed 37 flights of stairs and walked nearly 3.5 miles!
just seeing, saying, and sharing...
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