Wednesday, November 6, 2013


I thought I'd throw a few pictures of Beech Creek up here as it's been awhile since I've mentioned it.  I still think that this little creek is the prettiest piece of water in East Tennessee.  It is pristine and perfect to look at and it was created for a canoe.

The river grasses grow out from both shorelines and create a frame for the most beautiful water picture imaginable.

There is nothing that is harsh to the eye on this creek.  It's perfect.  I finally located the name of the farmer who's property borders this creek and I am going to arrange for permission to camp along this water on his property.  Hopefully, the TWRA emblem I wear on my shoulders will be of help in that matter.  Good heavens, it's beautiful back here.
The critters along the Holston River have been difficult to find since the water grass has receded for Winter.  That water grass is the big attractant to beaver, otter and ducks.  When the grass dies off in Fall - the cover and hiding places disappear and the animals are more vulnerable to danger and, they know it.  I believe the otters and beavers have removed themselves from the water during daylight hours an have become strictly nocturnal.  It makes sense.  Occasionally I'll see a beaver or an otter but, not like I did throughout the Summer.
 Mid afternoon soft light on the Holston River.  Gorgeous!
As I mentioned earlier - the critters are more difficult to find and one has to really look an "see" to find them.  They are there, however - well, some are.
I saw a coal black mink running down a log at full speed.  He jumped onto log after log as he was obviously running to his lair.  I couldn't get in camera range quick enough.  Mink are very observant and have absolutely no tolerance for boats, especially huge white boats with loud motors.  I drifted in close to the shore to watch for him in case he might appear.  A turkey landed far back in the meadow on a clear patch of ground between two wood lots.  Then, another landed.  I zero'd in with the camera.

They landed one by one on the narrow bare piece of ground in the wooded meadow, hesitated for mere seconds and rushed forward into the cover of the woods.

They are very wary as well they should be.  It's turkey season and this flock obviously has been shot at.
Birds can be seen stealthily moving down the steep wooded mountain to join the flock.  This is wild stuff.
 Turkeys are wonderful to watch.  They are interesting, to say the least.  The coyote population in these parts has grown to an unprecedented size and is starting to have a very negative impact on the turkey populations.  It's an example of how a misplaced animal can have drastic ramifications on an indigenous population of critters in an area that animal should not be in.  The coyotes have not been introduced here but, they have migrated here.  Actually, they have transformed into a totally different strain of canine than they originally were in the West.  These coyotes are large, sleek and very, very smart and some have cross bred with wolves and are called coy dogs.  We have em all here in East Tennessee.
I eventually ended up at the bottom end of the river and swung past the mountain that is home to the pair of bald eagles.  They were there and one of them was a little lower on the mountain than normal.

This one is the male.  He is a bit smaller than his mate.  She is here also but is roosting very, very high up on the mountain.  I took a couple shots of here just to record the moment.

He was still very far away but I felt I could get a couple acceptable pictures of him.  His mate is another story.  
 Not good pictures of her but at least she's documented.

The wind picked up a lot after three o clock and most of the fishermen left the lake.  I'll stay until the sun starts to fall and get out myself.  The water has become unfriendly and it's obvious that foul weather is on the way.
It's been a beautiful experience today even though I couldn't find any otters.  They'll be along eventually.  It's Cherokee Lake tomorrow morning, "yuk", and it looks like it will be raining.  That's a perfect combination.  Hope you liked this entry and I'll see you tomorrow.  I'm going home and continue a story I have downloaded into my new Kindle.  Can't wait!  It doesn't take much to make me happy.  See ya.