Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Short Morning Paddle at Hickory Hill

August 1, 2011 - Hickory Hill, Durham, NC

Rachel and I were still tired from a week long mission trip to Dulac, Louisiana... so we both wisely took off Monday. I really wanted to get out for an early morning paddle... but was not up for a long one. Rachel wanted to accompany me, but had a dentist appointment in the morning... so we compromised. Isn't that what marriage is about... a series of compromises with a person you love? ;-) We compromised on a short, late morning paddle at Hickory Hill on Falls Lake. Late morning weather saw temperatures in the mid 80's with high humidity, sunny skies, and a light variable breeze.

Preparing to put in at Hickory Hill boat ramp. There was little breeze or current at the start of our adventure that made for easy paddling... but it sure got hot quickly. Both Rachel and I were drenched in sweat after only paddling a 100 yards or so!

We headed NW hugging the lee shore. Here, the shoreline banks rose 10 - 20 feet and showed signs of extensive wind and water erosion.

Spotted this small island that was home to some egrets and other small wader birds.

One of the numerous route I-85 bridges that span Falls Lake.

This fellow's pontoon boat carried all the comforts of home - barbecue grill, TV, and mosquito repellent torch. I was glad to see a nearly full garbage bag tied to the starboard rail... a better option for disposing of litter... instead of dumping trash over the side as some boaters will do.

Spotted this osprey's nest on the far shore...

... but nobody was home.

We spotted numerous egrets and other wader-type birds striding along in the shallow waters, hunting for their next meal. The "walking on water" illusion was interesting!

Rachel and I had a nice and short late morning paddle at Hickory Hill. It was a good way to get our "paddle arms" back into shape... and as Rachel commented.... "to get our groove back!" ;-) Hope to return to Hickory Hill on Falls Lake soon since there is still a lot to discover here!


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