Midwestern Wanderlog

2016-02-25 – Wind riders

Morning view of the head of Lake Pepin

A morning view of the entrance to Lake Pepin, unobscured by exhaust from the NSP plant.

Ever think about the names given to groups of animals?  A group of geese is a ‘gaggle,’ finches and hummingbirds gather in a ‘charm,’ a get-together of crows is either a ‘congress’ or a ‘murder’ (and less commonly a ‘storytelling’), blue jays are a ‘party’ – and eagles come together in a ‘convocation.’

Sunrise Stats!
First light: 6:27 AM
Sunrise: 6:56 AM
Daylight: 11 hrs, 54 min

(Incidentally, there’s a whole listing of some common – and uncommon – group names for birds on this site.)

The convocation of eagles who call the Barn Bluff section of river home were soaring again today.  They seem to favor wind speeds of 10-15 miles per hour, and apparently they also like feeling them from the north.  Today they were calling to each other while on the wing.  It’s not much, but the iPhone caught at least their voices, if not a good rendering of their elegant selves.

Now that’s one thing I look forward to, when the time comes to upgrade my camera setup – my next rig is going to have video capability.  Already have my eye on the body and lens I want.  My older brother Ted – who has just the most wonderful and natural eye for photography – is getting my Canon 30D with Sigma DC 18-250.  (The Sigma’s a great basic lens, reasonably fast in the lower-magnification range, with auto-focus and the option for Image Stabilization when you’re freedhanding.)  Can’t wait to be able to give it to him!

Here’s a couple of his, taken with the Canon:

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See what I mean?  If he weren’t my brother, I’d be jealous how he darned near always gets an appealing shot.

_MG_6578Anyway.  This morning was near freezing, but chill with a stiff breeze that was making suggestions of what we call “barn door days” – those times during the spring where you could fly a barn door like a kite (if you had a rope strong enough to hold it).  The wind was pushing away the exhaust from the old NSP plant so rapidly that the view of the head of Lake Pepin was unobscured.  Kept trying all morning to catch a clean shot of it, and almost succeeded.  Hoping as the season winds on toward spring and the sun keeps moving northward, there will be more days where the plant isn’t running at all during sunrise and that lovely view of the water pointing right toward the sun will be completely clear.

Looking forward to true spring, and barn door weather, and days when the wind is 10-15 miles an hour so that the eagles will soar again.  I’ll get a clean shot of them yet, so I will, with every feather in as sharp a focus as their eyes!

Panoramic 056

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