Squam 7/24-8/1

I spent the week at Squam Lake with my family. My sons, Uriah and Nabil, along with Uri’s girlfriend, Anne, flew in from Portland, OR.

Monday morning I woke up to a scarlet sun shining in my window. I ran down to the dock, not even stopping to put my glasses on, to take some pictures.

Smoky sunrise. Squam Lake 7/26/21

That whole day, was smoky from wild fires in the West. Nabil and I went kayaking around Great Island and could hardly see the mountains.

Nabil kayaking through the haze. Squam Lake 7/26/21
Anne and her friend, Ingrid, in a canoe.

We sat on the dock, swam and kayaked,

Uri
Nabil on the dock.
Uri and Anne

and slept.

Sleeping beauties. Anne and Uri.

On Tuesday evening, my sisters started to arrive: Jain and Renny from Colorado, Ruthe from Arizona and Barb and Gene from Newfoundland.

Sisters. Ruthe, Barb, Jain, Nancy. 7/31/21

We had a good time catching up (we hadn’t seen Barb and Gene for two years because of COVID).

After dinner.

Barb, Anne and I went kayaking and saw stuff including blueberries.

We also climbed Mt. Rattlesnake, which has the best views for the amount of effort.

Anne, Nabil, Nancy and Barb on Mt. Rattlesnake. 7/30/21

Anne had wanted to go sailing and waterskiing sometime over the week. She and Renny tried to get the Sunfishes ready to go, but Renny forgot he was over 70 and overestimated his strength and pulled a muscle, so Anne had to wait until Barb showed up to help teach her. By the time the Sunfishes were ready, the wind had picked up to the point that only the most experienced sailers would be able to handle it, so they didn’t go.

Rigging the Sunfish

Jennifer Bellows arrived Friday night during an all point picnic with our cousins the Ingrams and the Smiths. The next morning, Anne got her chance at waterskiing before the wind came up.

… and she’s up. Anne waterskiing.

From my kayak 9/24-10/12

We have had a lovely fall. Plenty of sun, reasonable temperatures, not much wind. We saw some of the standbys: cormorants, loons, mergansers, eagles, ospreys and mallards.

Cormorant Squam Lake 10/12/2020
Common loon getting winter plumage. Squam Lake, 10/12/2020
Common merganser. Ompompanoosuc River 10/11/2020
Mallard drake. Connecticut River. 10/5/2020
Osprey. Connecticut River 9/24/20

This time of year, we see some more unusual birds, many passing through.

Pied bill grebe. Connecticut River 10/5/2020
Black ducks. Connecticut River. 10/5/2020
White throated sparrow. Connecticut River, 10/14/2020
Yellow rumped warbler. Ompompanoosuc River, 10/1/2020
Red tailed hawk with a snake wrapped around its leg. Hartford, VT, 10/1/2020

The foliage has been lovely.

Leaf. Connecticut River, 10/1/2020
Jane on Mink Brook. 9/24/2020
Lower Baker Pond, 10/3/2020
Railroad bridge. Ompompanoosuc River 9/28/2020
Great Island. Squam Lake, 10/12/2020
River bend. Ompompanoosuc River 10/11/2020

Paddles 5/20-23

We have had some warmer weather and the water temperatures are now above 50, so we’ve taken to the water. The quarantine rules have relaxed some, so I am traveling a bit farther afield. I drove to Squam Lake, spent the day with my niece and her husband, washed a few windows and took a short paddle.

Water’s edge. Squam Lake, NH 5/20/20

The next day, Jane and I met her brother, sister, and brother-in-law for a delightful kayak on Upper Baker Pond in Orford. We saw a pair of loons, some white flowering bushes,

Loon. Upper Baker Pond, NH. 5/21/20
Shad bush (Service Berry?) Upper Baker Pond, NH 5/21/20

and one mallard drake. Is the hen sitting on a nest?

Mallard drake. Upper Baker Pond, NH 5/21/20

We kayaked on the Connecticut River out of Wilder on Saturday. We came across a family of geese.

Canada goose family. Connecticut River, NH 5/22/20

It was finally warm enough that we heard the frogs singing.

Frog. Connecticut River, VT. 5/22/20
Spotted sandpiper. Connecticut River, VT. 5/23/20

From my kayak 9/17-10/14

It has been a beautiful fall: some rain, some sun and dropping temperatures.

Storm’s a-coming. Connecticut River, Orford, NH 9/24/19

We continued to paddle a few times a week.

Reflections. Connecticut River, Fairlee, VT 9/24/19
Rick. Lake Katherine, Piermont, NH 9/21/19
Barb with yellow tree. Squam Lake, Holderness, NH 10/13/19
Colorful trees across the cove. Squam Lake, Holderness, NH 10/12/19

We haven’t seen a lot of wildlife: a few ducks, geese, a green heron…

Mallard flying. Connecticut River, Fairlee, VT 9/24/19
Green heron. Ompompanoosuc River, Norwich, VT 9/18/19
Bald eagle. Squam Lake, Holderness, NH 10/13/19
Loon in winter garb. Goose Pond, Canaan, NH 10/14/19
Hornet’s nest. Connecticut River, Hanover, NH 10/5/19
Chipmunk. Connecticut River, Norwich, VT 9/28/19
Geese flying. Goose Pond, Canaan, NH 10/14/19
Moose Mountain. Goose Pond, Canaan, NH 10/14/19

Unfortunately, all good things come to an end. The water is now below 50 and because we don’t have wet/dry suits, we have put the kayaks away for the season.

From my kayak 6/22-7/11

We have spent several days a week in our kayaks for the past few weeks. We have just seen a few ducks and geese this year, but a wide variety of other wildlife.

Birds

Mammals

Other animals

People

And a couple of other things not from a kayak.

Milkweed flower. Hartford, VT 7/6/19
Sunset after a storm. Hartford, VT 7/6/19