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Thursday, April 30, 2015

FAVORITE ISLAND ON CHEROKEE LAKE

Cherokee Lake is impressive in size when its full of water.  It has over 500 miles of shoreline.  I'd say that's pretty big.

I got Ms. Sharp and Shade stuffed into the old truck and we set off with the 14 foot jon boat for Cherokee Lake at the Granger County Park ramp.  I wanted to revisit the pretty little island we found yesterday.  We stopped at a really big island on the way across the bay to see what it had to offer.
I will eventually get a 125cc four stroke for this boat but in the meantime the 9.9 hp engine will have to do.  Its not that I'm in a hurry but its nice to outrun a storm, especially on these enormous lakes where things turn nasty really quickly and I might want to follow behind an eagle.
The interior of this island was almost impassable.  Heavy vines, saplings and tall weeds intermingled with fallen wood and washed up debris made it super difficult to walk so we tried to slog along the shoreline.  Shade was having the time of her life.


I turned around to see what Clarissa was doing and couldn't see her.  Then I caught a movement near the ground through the foliage.  If you look closely in the center of the photo below you will see her----hat.
 Painstakingly focusing and maneuvering about in attempts to secure that one special shot.
The rocks are pretty on this island.  Cherokee Lake is noted for its rocks, you know...



The view across the lake was really pretty from the north edge of this island that sits squarely in the center of the water between the two shorelines.
The lake is narrow here and widens immediately as one travels upstream.
 Above and below are views upstream from the island we are on.  Formidable water in bad weather, I'd say.
We turned to go back to the boat as the sky was darkening and we wanted to visit the sandy little island that lay not far from our present position.
Clarissa is carrying a really pretty piece of driftwood along back to the boat.  
We loaded up and set off for the tiny island that is so pretty.
This is a friendly island to beach a boat on.  The shoreline is sand and easy to walk on as well as glide a boat safely onto.
 The tree below is the one Clarissa was sitting in when I took her picture yesterday.
 The sky is getting darker by the minute and wind is roughing up the water's surface.  We may make this a brief stop.  The engine is small and the distance back to the truck is great.
And I had to get a picture of her pretty face - smiling as usual.

There are ample photo opportunities on this little island.
I saw a lone sapling standing against the blue sky and took the shot, walked over to it and that is when Shade startled a goose.  Darned if I didn't forget that the geese are nesting.
Shade casually and quietly walked right up to mother goose who was sitting on her eggs and barely touched the goose with her nose sending the goose into a frenzy onto the water honking continuously.  I quickly walked over to shade who was inspecting the eggs and called her away instantly.  She came to me immediately.  I felt so stupid forgetting about this being nesting time and should have used extreme caution before letting shade roam freely without taking precautions.  Shade would never harm the goose or eggs but she and we are disturbances that are not necessary or wanted in these times of new life in wild places.  No harm done though.

Shade and I quickly vacated the area and returned to the opposite end of the island where Clarissa was photographing.  The goose quickly came back to the shoreline and waddled up into the grass to her nest.  It would take more than that little disturbance by us to cause mother goose to abandon a nest full of eggs.  Now, if we put a tent up on the island she just might leave.  Thats why its good practice to assure there are no nesting birds in the immediate area before camping.  Practice what I preach!   I know...
 This is a pretty, pretty area.
Shade deserved some swim time and a stick was promptly tossed in the water for her.  What a fine, fine friend!


Just a couple more shots of stuff and we will leave this pretty place.
I wanted to show anyone interested the new steering stick I have that fits over the tiller.  Pull it to turn left and push on it to turn right.  I sit fully facing the front of the boat instead of sitting sideways holding the tiller in my left hand, which is tiring and causes aches in my shoulder.  This thing really works well and I recommend it.
 I just sit facing full front with the long steering bar under my left arm, sticking out about a foot in front of me.  I use my left hand to apply pressure rearward or to pull forward.  The connecting point of the bar is articulated and bends at the junction point with the tiller handle.
That's it for this entry.  Hope you liked the sights and don't forget to help any dog in need.  See ya.....
 Time to load this boat up and leave.








Wednesday, April 29, 2015

CHEROKEE LAKE VIEWS


Below:  What a beautiful scene!
All of a sudden the lakes have come alive after the long visual droughts of winter.  Cherokee lake is now full of water and the advent of spring and summer have graced this rock hole with beauty and grace
Along with the pretty shoreline views come the birds and very few mammals.  Aquatic birds and raptors are now making themselves apparent to the inquisitive eye.  It seems the osprey is on the scene wherever I go and the photography opportunities these fantastic birds offer is unending.








 
 
 




 

Love the osprey!  Bald eagles have been secretive today for some reason.  Soon the pleasure boats will be plunging through the water and the disturbance will be too much for most of the wildlife and it will retreat to hidden recesses on the shorelines to get away from the intrusion, and once again wildlife views will be scarce as they were in winter.  But for now things are sweet on the water wildlife wise.

 Its a time for new life



 Raptors exhibit power and grace and present a great show, but this diminutive spotted sandpiper works behind the scenes to help nature work.  Most of his movements and work go unseen.


A juvenile bald eagle is harassed by a raven on high.  That little black bird had better show care in the future when the eagle finally realizes its full power potential.