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Category Archives: Patterson lake

What’s more fun on a hot day than time spent at the lake? While Mary and Gus were here we went to Patterson Lake a few times. She brought one of her new stand up paddle boards so everyone got to try it – me, Ken and even Sky! It is not the kind of thing Luna wants to do. Mary and Gus already are experienced with this water sport. With only one board, someone was always throwing sticks or balls for the dogs so everyone enjoyed the water.

What fun to finally get my kayak back on the water. It’s been a challenging spring with lower back pain slowing me down at every turn. It is on the mend and while it’s not pain-free, it’s mostly tolerable. The weather is improving this week too. Yesterday was even what you might call warm. Well, depending on where you live and what you’re used to!

I moved stuff around the garage on Saturday and dragged the boat outside to hose off the dust and other winter accumulations; yesterday I put the racks on my car and finally, finally I loaded my boat with some trepidation anticipating that spasm of back pain. I managed without causing anymore pain so I took off for the lake. Ken and the dogs followed a while later with the fishing boat. I saw some Wood Ducks and a pair of Hooded Mergansers and Canada Geese, in addition to lots of singing Yellow-rumped Warblers and other song birds. It was nice to get out if even for just a short while. Today I’m a little sore but mostly tolerable still.

 

 

Even without much snow, there is still winter fun to be had. I took the girls/dogs to frozen Patterson Lake a couple days ago along with my skate skis. The small amount of snow on the ice surface is sort of chopped up now but I was still able to skate ski on it. Not very gracefully though. Since this is Sky’s first winter, she is learning about skis and skiing and staying away from the potentially dangerous (to her) sticks on my feet. And to her they are sticks and she just loves sticks. I haven’t even tried using poles around her yet. This was our second ski outing and she did better. A few other folks were out enjoying the ice and bluebird skies too. They were ice fishing, ice skating, classic skiing and playing with dogs. I saw one Great Blue Heron perched high in a snag. I wonder if the bird has learned to steal fish from the ice anglers? Most of them hope to catch perch but trout and kokanee salmon seem to be easier to catch.

Yesterday with my boat piled up high on the truck I drove to Patterson Lake. It might be the last paddle of the season. Snow is in tonight’s forecast and according to local predictions, we may be skiing before the end of the month. I sure hope to get my boat out again before winter sets in for good.

 

The weather was chilly with a light breeze and brilliant sunshine on the fading autumn foliage. It’s been too long since I’ve been in my boat and I felt clumsy to start but soon got into a rhythm. A Pileated Woodpecker crossed the lake in front of me. Hooded Mergansers acted as though I was a threat and flew before I could approach closely. The males are already showing off their big hoods while the females act disinterested. I heard but didn’t see, Mallards. No little birds were heard – no chickadees, nuthatches, finches.

 

At the south end of the lake, I observed these green round ‘things’ in the water. They were small, mostly less than a quarter inch in diameter but some a bit larger. Are they algae? Some sort of eggs? Seeds? In some places they were piled several layers deep; other places they covered the lake bottom in a single layer and in some places they were sparse. I’ve never seen them in the water before. With me on a boat and these underwater, they were hard to photograph. I got some in my hands their texture was spongy. I should have taken them back to shore to get a better look.

 

My boat matched the scenery.

 

I also saw a number of dead fish at the south end of the lake. Are these 8-10 inch fish planted kokanee? Are they spawned out? I also saw schools of similar fish swimming in the same area.

 

This not quite grown-up Bald Eagle flushed from a pine as I paddled by. Looking closely, you can see that it has one of those small fish in its bill.

A few seconds later it flew back in the other direction but now the fish is in its talons.

Life is full of excitement.

This morning started out to be another ho,t still day, similar to yesterday. At Patterson Lake, birds were singing, insects buzzing and a few early risers were out fishing and stretching their muscles on the water. I paddled my kayak from one end to the other and back, listening to birds and buzzing insects from the trees. I saw an Osprey catch a fish; heard woodpeckers tapping on trees; saw turtles sunning themselves on logs. It was a good morning to be out on the water.

 

 

 

a Common Goldeneye chick

 

Here the chick is reunited with its family

 

I saw this moth thrashing around in the water

 

and brought it onto my boat to dry its tattered leaves.

Later I left it in a tree.

 

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