Chasing Lumens, Kayaking at Night in the Russian River Estuary

Friday August 8, 2014 Jenner CA.

I was planning to fill some more of the ditch in, ,but  my back was telling me. I did enough of that yesterday. I did some watering in the yard and worked at getting all my pictures and videos transferred over to my new computer, which took most of the day.

Worked on the car

When my back was feeling a little better, after a cold pack on it, I worked on my car a bit, trying to solve an intermittent stumble problem it’s had for about six months.

I took the idle control valve off and checked it out and cleaned it as best I could. It seemed to be ok, so I put it all back together for a test drive later. That didn’t fix anything, unfortunately.

Time to get yakking

Around five PM, I was thinking I’d better get it going if I was going to go out tonight for a night kayak to check out the lumens. But, I was too tired out, so a nap was had and I was down at Jenner around seven thirty, just right.

There was to be a good sized moon tonight, so if it is cloudy or foggy, I’ll see some lumens, but if it’s clear and starry, I’ll just have a nice moon light kayak.

As I arrived at Jenner, I could see this might just be a moon night as it was blue sky as I put my boat in the water. There was also a bit of wind, but not too bad.

Willow Creek

My  plan was to go up the river to Willow Creek and see if there were any lumens getting into the creek area?

I headed up the river on the south shore side, taking my time, as it needs to get dark for checking on lumens.

This was how it looked just after I passed the east end of Penny Island headed up the river. Note the moon is already up a bit.upview


This cormorant was sitting on this log watching the sun go down.cormorant


And close by, this little duck was


High tide

It’s a 6.6 foot high tide which is pretty high for around here. I’d consider it a high, high tide. A good high tide, to bring lots of salt water with lumens in it, into the estuary.

This was my view as I sat at the Redwood log graveyard for a bit.moonbird


I crossed over to Paddy’s rock and continued on up that side of the river along here.russianriver


It was still pretty light as I crossed under the bridge at highway one. I needed to slow down to let it get darker.bridge


I’m going by the Willow Creek area in this picture, but it’s too light yet, so I headed up the river towards Seal Haven.willowcreek


I’m headed up the river towards seal have in this picture.riverup



But I didn’t quite make it and went over and sat under that big tree until it was darker, mostly as it looked so nice over there.river


It’s hard waiting for the dark

I’m just sitting there waiting for it to get darker so I can see any lumens. It’s always hard to just sit and wait for it to get dark. The urge to head on home is great. I found myself paddling on back once, but stopped myself and went on back.evening


Just before it got dark, I paddled into the Willow creek to check it out. It was nice and calm in there were I stayed for a bit.


It was getting dark enough to see lumens, but the moon was shining in most places. Lumens turn their lights out, if there is any light out, so most of them could not be seen because of the moon.

However, I paddled down the south side of the river, which is mostly in the moon’s shadow.

I didn’t see any lumens around the willow creek mouth, but as I was traveling down, just before I picked up the houses on the south side, I started to see lumens. Lot’s of lumens, but only in the dark of the shade.

Fish too

All of  a sudden, a bigger fish swim by in the lumens and more of them too. Anything that moves in the  lumens causes them to turn on and glow, so one can see fish move under the water.

I continued on down and continued to see more fish, especially smaller ones. As long as I stayed in the shadows, the lumens were thick as I could see from my paddle causing the water to glow as I moved along.

I followed the lumens down to about the highway one bridge. At this point the moon was shining on the shoreline, so I saw only some lumens when it was dark enough. I did find that the rocky faced shoreline was a good place to find lumens and fish, as there was usually a shaded spot in those areas.

When I couldn’t see anymore lumens, because of the moon, I paddled on back leisurely in the moon light.

Jenner at night

This is what it looked like as I approached the town of Jenner.jenner


Things were pretty dead in Jenner when I pulled my boat out of the  water and went on home.

Although, the moon was out, I was pretty successful seeing some lumens, mostly because the moon was fairly south, so it left for a lot of moon shade along some of the  river’s south shoreline.

Nice night out on the river.

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