Monday, October 11, 2010

Wild Swan Chase

Last Monday I decided to take advantage of the beautiful Native American Summer weather by driving up The River to check on the annual Tundra Swan migration. Just south of La Crosse, Wisconsin on the west side of the Mississippi River is an area where thousands of Tundra Swans, and other migratory water fowl, stop to rest and carb up for their journey to their wintering grounds. I thought it might be a little early in the season and with the warm weather, the chances of large numbers of birds would be pretty slim. But, it was nearly eighty degrees and a good excuse for a car ride. I guess I wasn't the only one yearning for a road trip. On my little journey I saw more top down convertibles than I had seen all summer. Anyway, I was right! On the way "up" I drove the Wisconsin side of The River and saw no wild life other than a couple of elderly ladies dueling for the same handicap parking spot at Walmart. Proceeding "down" the Minnesota side I finally spotted a Blue Heron and then small groups of Canada Geese. (barely a gaggle) When I arrived at the area that Our Government has designated as an authorized Swan Rest Stop I could see three or four groups of swans out in the center of The River. Even my zoom lens didn't make it worth while to try shooting photos of them. As a matter of fact I'm not even sure if they were swans or not. They could have been pelicans or white rhinos for all I could tell. Can't consider the trip a complete waste of time. Because after arriving back home, while downloading my camera, I discovered that I had captured quite an interesting shot. As I drive up to The Cities this weekend you can be sure that I'll be a lot more aware of what's out in that river.

It's amazing that I didn't notice the fall color on the opposite shore.