Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Early morning, late summer paddle on the Eno River

 Location: Eno River, Durham, NC Temperature: 74F Wind: Light Conditions: Mostly cloudy

On Sunday, September 7, I decided that an early morning paddle on the Eno River was in order! Rachel elected for more sleep, so it was just me and my Aquafusion Liberty 13. After a hasty breakfast, and quick gear pack, I drove to the Eno River boat ramp, off Red Mill Road, and put in a little after 7:00 AM. Click on the photos to enlarge.

I put in and paddled SW on the Eno River. It was cool, with temperatures in the low 70's F and overcast skies - excellent paddling conditions.

As the sun rose, it illuminated beautiful cloud formations.

I rounded a bend in the river, and spotted this Heron perched on a dead tree branch.

Woodland Sunflower in bloom on the banks of the Eno River.

American Bittern perched on a jumble of fallen tree limbs.

Huge power line towers, carrying electricity to Durham and surrounding areas, march off into the distance.

I encountered the same debris field that blocked my way during my paddle on the Eno River (May 31, 2014); however, on this morning, there was clear passage to the left of the fallen trees and debris, due to heavy rains the past week. 

Once I navigated around the debris field, I was able to continue and explore areas of the Eno River I had never paddled. A large birch tree overhung the water.

This tree had fallen victim to rot and a possible lightening strike.

I discovered a sandy cove and took a much welcomed bio break and stretch.

The woods and surrounding underbrush were almost primeval in appearance...

... and with dense growth. I was amazed that this woodland scene was only minutes away from the urban "concrete jungle" of Durham!

Intricate root system exposed by air and water. 

Early morning paddles are one of the best times to observe wildlife and to enjoy a tranquil and quiet outing. It's when "unplug and unwind" become a reality and you forget about all those other responsibilities and just focus on the moment. Life is really about capturing those "moments" and not about collecting "things." This early morning paddle on the Eno River was one of those moments and I was really glad to be a part of it!  

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