Is the Russian River’s Mouth Really Closed, Eh

Wednesday October 28, 2015 Jenner CA.

I heard a little rain on the roof as I woke this morning so I stayed in bed a bit longer. But I did get it going and headed down to Jenner as most of the rain had stopped.

I put the boat in the water as I heard the surf pounding down by the ocean. As I paddled on over to that area, a very light drizzle came out of the sky, maybe it was just the  mist off the crashing waves pounding the beach.

I’m headed on down  there to check it out. Maybe I’ll see some big spawning fish come over the sand bar in the waves. I paddled away and was down there in no time.

River’s mouth area

This is what things looked like down that way where I was going.riversend


I passed by these birds, mostly seagulls ands some brown pelicans. Note they are behind the jetty where the waves don’t wash over much, but today we have some big waves and it’s high tide, over six feet which is high for this area and occasionally they had to fly, then return.birds2



As I approached the area, I could see brown foam everywhere and it was about six inches high, which meant there had been lots of ocean water breaking over the beach and coming into the estuary before I arrived. I was just after slack high tide.

I sat here for quite some time watching. Note the brownish wave breaking in the background. That wave is full of sand and that’s how the ocean can dam up the river. It can carry huge amounts of sand in each wave.bigwave


Note: I drove my car to the overlook after I left the river to take the next picture.

This is looking out over the Russian River into the Pacific ocean. The wave is breaking on the jetty. Note the wave coming over the sandy beach. Who says the river’s mouth is closed?  There’s a fog bank out there in the ocean, hope it stays out there.jett2


I paddled on over to the end of the river where I saw this big stream of water coming into the estuary. Lots of water flowing. The brown foam was especially high here. The foam comes off the ocean and comes in with the water from it. but since it doesn’t sink, it piles up.reivend


Just so you get the idea, this road shot shows the waves breaking over the bar. I was to the right as far as I could get watching in the above picture.riverend


I stayed there for awhile, but the water was sometimes coming in pretty fast and eventually I went back over in  the area of the end of the jetty where I sat. I drifted a bit close to the sand where the waves were breaking over when this one told me to back up a bit. Note the brown waves full of sand.sand


First video I’ve posted

I made a video of what I was seeing as I watched in front of the closed River’s’ mouth with the ocean raging.

Is the River’s mouth really closed to spawning fish?

I backed up and watched from here and it was a good thing I did as that wave coming in was a big. one.waves


Harbor seal

One of the seals popped up very close to me and checked me out. Usually when one pops up down in this area, it’s surprised and goes back under fast with a big splash that gets me all wet, but not this one. We looked each other in the eye as it circled around my bow and then took off. Getting a picture real fast to capture something like that isn’t easy, so I had to adjust the pic a bit to level things out. :O) I’m also bobbing in the water which also doesn’t help.seal2


Motion sick

All that bobbing around and looking through my camera was starting to make me seasick, so I moved on out and went over to Penny Island and paddled into it a bit and sat here were it was calm. I was looking out back towards the ocean.island



After a good rest there, I decided to go up the river, just a little ways, so I moved up the side of Penny Island and went past some of my seal buddies. Coco and Pops is one of the back ones. One of the reasons I hadn’t named Pops is there are several seals that look just like it. But Patti, a reader suggested Pops, so pops it is and maybe there is more than one Pops. :O) That’s a cormorant on the right.buddies


I only went up the river a short ways and then crossed over to check the bird wild life out. There were some geese in the field with some ravens and a big flock of black birds landing and flying around.

Just past them I sat here for a bit watching these mallards and the mud hens behind them.ducks


I paddled on back to the boat ramp along the north shoreline and took my boat out. The gage at the visitor center read about seven and a half feet. I think it was six and a half yesterday. The ocean can rise the estuary level quite a bit when the waves come over the sand bar like today. If it was real stormy out there, it could fill it right up.gage


Headed to the overlook

Instead of going home, I drove on down to the overlook just past the town of Jenner to get a few pictures.

This one is looking south over the closed river into the Pacific ocean. That’s Goat Rock down there to the left. You can also see one of the places waves do get over the jetty about in the middle of the picture.goatrock


Harbor seals

The waves had slacked a bit by now as it was several hours after high tide, so some of the harbor seals had pulled out down where I was earlier. Some of them are headed to the ocean over the sand.seals


Didn’t see big fish

I didn’t see any big spawning fish come in over the sand bar today, but I was only there for a short time and it looked like even bigger waves had come over before I got there, so who knows? I do think spawning fish can get into the estuary this way and I have had reports of people seeing them come in this way in the past.

Locked out of my blog

I went on home for the day. At home I found I was locked out of my blog site because of an error that I’d seen for awhile that didn’t’ seem to cause any problems, until it was time to re-up my sign-in which I have to do about once a mouth. Darn, always something and I was still feeling not so good from the motion of the water earlier.

I hit the couch for a nap and thought about what to do about the blog thing. After some thought and a good nap, I decided to go to my server and delete the plugin I’d known was causing the problem which was successful. Yea.

That was my day.

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One Response to Is the Russian River’s Mouth Really Closed, Eh

  1. Dan says:

    Really good post. I enjoyed seeing the video on Youtube. Congrats on your first video. You got a good camera for it. I’m planning on going out to Jenner later on this morning. Maybe I’ll see you.

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