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Anything outdoors!  Tornadoes, eagles, blizzards, or auroras.  If it is in the sky, running through the woods or swimming in the water, I'm there!


Friday, February 20, 2009

The snow is back and nothing but bird butts

After stopping to visit with Eric and Carrie at the hospital for a bit, thought I would take the scenic road home along the Crow River as the snow from a little clipper system was approaching. There was one eagle nest I wanted to take a peek at and figured maybe the snow would make for a cool effect if anyone was around.

Seemed like every raptor I saw today was camera shy and didn't want to turn around to see what I was up to.

Well, after dinging around too long with the hawks, I finally made it to where I could see the nest and it looked like there was one eagle sitting up a little higher but it was a long ways out. I managed to find a place to park and start about a 1/2 mile walk to where I thought I could get a good view. By now the snow was coming down much harder and I had to keep the camera with the big lens on as well covered with my coat as I could.

I found a good vantage point about 100 yards back from the nest where the view was ok on the side of a hill looking almost straight across at the nest. Whatever eagle was hanging around had departed by the time I hiked to my spot so I decided to give it a shot and wait for a half hour or so to see if anything came back. By now the snow is coming down much harder and the visibility is rapidly dropping. Just as I was about to leave, I hear the familiar eeee-ak-ak-eeee of an eagle close by. I turn around to see a mature bald eagle about 6 feet off the ground coming straight at me. Oh crap. I started having flashbacks to last April up in Wright county where I got buzzed while waiting on a nest. I scrambled to pull the camera and long lens from under my coat. At 400mm getting the shot nicely focused and framed was not an option. About this time the eagle veered off and quickly climbed leaving me with nothing but another butt shot for the day. Figures.

Not sure what the plan for the weekend is at this point. I'd like to head down to Alma, WI again but there is also a chaser gathering on Saturday night. Waiting to see how much snow falls tonight and where then take it from there.

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