A Paddle, a Hike Up to the Ridge and Shakes for the Roof

Tuesday November 10, 2015 Jenner CA.

Visitor center work

There were working on the visitor center today as I put in my boat. Looks like they were just finishing up prepping the roof and starting to do some repairs on the deck.centerroof


I paddled out from the boat ramp into some brown pelicans diving for fish. Here’s one of the big birds hunting for some fish to dive on.pelicanfly


The wind was down and the sun was out for a nice day as I headed on up the river going past Penny Island, past some feeding coots, up ahead. The coots were feeding on the underwater plants.island


I could see some cormorants diving for fish up ahead, so I headed over their way. They move fairly fast following the fish, so they are hard to watch for long as they shoot off up or down the river. They looked like they were doing well fishing.corsfish


Muskrat area

I worked my way up to the muskrat area and sat here for a spell watching and thinking I should go for a little hike up the hill at the Indian rock trailhead which is just a little ways in front of me in the trees.paddle


Indian Rock Trailhead

I pulled into the Indian Rock trailhead here and beached my boat and tied it up, just in case.boat


I walked up to the ridge top on this trial through the brush.The poison oak is dormant right now, which means there are no leaves to help spot it. Instead, there are lots of branches without leaves that you can’t avoid while walking through the brush. I’m fortunate I don’t catch the stuff, but I still try to avoid it as much as possible.trail


I was hunting around the ridge top looking for new animal trails. New meaning new to me, but actually real old animal trails through the bushes. I stopped in this spot to have a look down at the river and to take a break. While I was sitting there, I heard the wild turkeys somewhere down in that field across the river. I did spot them grazing in the grasses, but too far for a good picture. The rock to the left in the picture is Paddy’s rock.russianriver


I took the same trail down the hill as it was a new trail and I was trying to commit it to memory. Most of the trails are short animal trails that start and stop, so I have a hard time remembering exactly where they are and I do get a bit lost now and then.

The sun was over the hill when I got back to my boat and I looked out into the river, up to the bridge.kayak


Is the river’s mouth closed?

I noticed my  boat was about the same distance out of the water as when I left it earlier and by now the tide should have dropped a bit, but it hadn’t. Was the river’s mouth closing up?

I was pretty tired out, so I put the boat in the water and paddled to some calm water and just sat in the boat and rested. I was watching this least grebe just sitting out there in front of me, when it dove down and came up with this little long critter it was having a hard time swallowing. I’m not sure what it was, maybe a little eel or a little snakefish. I’ve seen them catch and eat these before. The thing curls up so the bird really has to work at getting it down.grebe2


I paddled on over to Paddy’s rock where these cormorants were resting with some ducks.  A few of them flew off, but most of them stayed as I passed.cors3


Paddling down to the river’s mouth to find out

Paddling around, it sure looked like the river’s mouth might be closing up, so I was going to have to go down there to have a look see.

As I approached the river’s mouth, it looked like it might be closed.mouthopen


But looking closer, it appeared t wasn’t closed, but almost. The people are standing in about six inches of water that is the river going into the ocean. The ocean had pushed enough sand into the open mouth to dam it up, which keeps the estuary water level higher. High tides from the ocean can come into the river, but when the ocean goes to low tide, not much water can flow out of the river into the ocean when it’s like this.pioplemouth


There were a bunch of brown pelicans just above the harbor seals to the right of the mouth, all taking it easy.pelseals


Wood shakes for the center’s roof

I headed on back to the boat ramp. As I arrived at the ramp, I could see this. A  week ago or so I had asked one of the guys working on the roof what kind of roof they were going to put on the visitor center and he answered, comp.shingles


But today, you can see they have shakes on that lift. That’s good as the old building had redwood shakes and this would keep the old building looking more historically like an old building instead of something more modern.

There’s also a good chance the shake roof will last a lot longer in the hash weather conditions down here by the ocean.

I pulled into the boat ramp and went on home and that was it for the day as it’s getting dark now just after five PM.

Nice day.

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