Otters Birds Steelhead and a Turtle Kayaking Monte Rio

Sunday January 26, 2014 Monte Rio CA.

A nice day on the Russian River

Today seemed like a good day to go down to Monte Rio and kayak, so that’s what I did.

I put my boat in the water at the Monte Rio boat ramp just before noon. The sun was out and it was a nice day. I decided to head down river, maybe to Casini’s?

The river’s water level was up in this area because the river’s mouth is still closed.

This is my view of the river just below Monte Rio as I paddled down stream.riverview


I spied this green heron fishing as I went by.greenheron


I shot the bull with Andrew

I pulled into the Villa Grande hole and sat around for a bit. Just as I was going to take off, I heard my name called. It was Andrew with his big dog.

Andrew fishes around the river  a lot in this area, so we exchanged information on what’s going on with the steelhead. He gave me some tips on where he saw some big fish. I said I’d see him there later and went on down the river.andrew


Help, my boat got away

Just below him, I heard, oh, oh and looked across the river. This guy had just pushed his kayak down the grassy slope and oh, oh, it slid all the way into the water and started to move away from him. I offered to get it for him. His name was Charles and he was going to take his two big dogs out for a ride.

Pictures not too good, but that yellow looking thing is his kayak taking off by itself.charles


I talked with him a bit then continued on down the river.

My view as I approached the Sheraton beach area.river


I continued on down the river to the Moscow hole area and just on past Rein’s beach, before turning around and heading back up the river.

Moscow hole is on the left in this picture.view


Black crowned night herons

As I was going back up the river, I spied about six of these black crowned night herons in the willow trees along the river’s edge.heron



They didn’t fly and while I was taking pics of them, I heard a big splash just to my right up the river. It was some otters. They were being real careful and didn’t present themselves for any real good pictures.

The river otters.otters


Andrew shows me the steelhead

Shortly after that, I ran into Andrew again and he showed me where he had found some big fish the other day. The fish were hiding in some shallows in the willows. They like to hide in the shallows to keep away from seals. It’s not an easy place to fish and if one is hooked, it has a lot of places to tangle itself. I heard Andrew say, there’s one  and there’s another one, but I couldn’t see anything, I thought he might be a bit loony, but knowing him, there must be fish. Eventually, some big fish splashed in the water. I watched, trying to get a picture of some of them. Although I did see some real nice fish, I just couldn’t get a picture of any of them as they moved too fast in the shallow water. Andrew didn’t catch any fish while I was there, but I left him trying to catch them.

Andrew fishing in the willows.fisherman


A little head pops up

Just above Andrew, I spotted this little head looking at me from the weeds in the river. What’s that?grebehead


It sank and disappeared and I never saw it again. I think it was one of these little grebes. I saw this one later. They are diving birds.grebe2


When I got back to Villa Grande hole, the sun was still shinning in the weed patch there so I sat there for a bit warming up.

I sat in these weeds at Villa Grande for a bit, looking up river.villagrande


And a sunning turtle

Just above that, I passed this turtle on the edge of the river, so did a turn around and went back to get a pic. It didn’t dive and stayed on that spot getting some sun as I shot it’s picture.turtle


The sun was starting to go behind the hills, so I headed on up to Monte Rio.

Just below Monte Rio, I took this last picture for the day, looking up river.river2


That was a nice day, it’s hard to believe it’s winter around here.

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