Monday, October 25, 2010

Traveling Light Oooops Otters!

It poured over the weekend. The rain slammed down and our local lake went up over five feet. As a consequence the creeks started flowing and the rumor is that the salmon and steelhead are starting to move up the coastal rivers. Because the water was flowing in the creeks and there was a little bit of sun(beautiful sunrise) I decided to do a little stream photography.

In packing I decided to travel light as all I would need was one lens and a sturdy tripod. So I grabbed my Tokina 19-35 wide angle lens and trusty Manfrotto tripod and headed down to the creek. I immediately found some pleasing compositions as I worked my way up the creek. I kept hearing a birdlike chirp in the background. I was aware of it but not really locking in on the sound. Suddenly a movement right below me in the creek caught my eye. I saw the flick of a tail going under a cutbank. An otter I quickly caught myself thinking. Soon two others popped up and then they all stopped and looked up at me and started heading down stream.So that's what that chirping noise was!

I saw where they were headed and trotted downstream to get ahead of them. I climbed down the bank and sat in the brush and waited for about ten minutes. Looking up the creek I saw them coming. They were sliding through the riffles and climbing over the rocks. Suddenly they all stopped in catching my scent. They could smell me but couldn't figure out where I was located. Two of them dove under water and went right past where I was sitting on the bank. They all passed less than two feet away. The third one surfaced right next to my left side and when it popped up and saw me it immediately dove back under. See the inset image. Next time I'm bringing a telephot lens and a flash!

What an amazing way to end my outing. Those otters were really cool.

God's blessings to all,

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