Some Harbor Seal Pups and Our Stupidity Gets Us Caught in the Rain

Tuesday April 7, 2015 Jenner CA.

The weather prediction was for thunder storms

It rained hard last night, but it had stopped by the time I got up this morning, so I looked at the weather report and it said possible thunder storms around noon today.

Ok, I can deal with that, so I headed on down to Jenner. The sun was out with some clouds in the sky as I drove into the parking lot. Ray pulled in just after I did.

Things were looking pretty good so we decided not to put on our rain pants, which we soon found out was a big mistake. Our wind breaker jackets double as a rain jacket so we always have some rain gear on.

Headed down to the river’ s mouth area

Anyway, we put our boats into the water and headed across to Penny Island where we decided to head on down to the river’s mouth to see what’s going on.

While working our way down the side of Penny Island we could see a white kayak along the shoreline, across the river, apparently loose. Not far from that one, was a blue one, also loose. They looked like two kayaks the café down here owns. They looked like they might stay where they were, so we continued on down towards the mouth, thinking we might take the loose kayaks back to the boat ramp on the way back.

We passed this pair of mallard ducks just as we left the end of the island. They were feeding.mallards


Seals and cormorants hunting fish

There was a bunch of splashing across the river from us. These harbor seals seem to be hunting for fish of some kind.sealshunt


This small flock of cormorants were in on the action.cormotants


Clouds in the sky

Things were looking nice as we headed for the river’s mouth area. There were some big clouds in the sky and it looked like the sun was coming out and there wasn’t much wind.russianriver


River’s mouth is open

Here we are just in front of the open river’s mouth, with some harbor seals resting on the beach on the left. The river goes down to the end and takes a sharp left and the mouth is open. And that’s haystack rock on the right. You can sorta get an idea of why they call it haystack rock. It has lichen growing on it that makes it yellow.rivermouth


Harbor seal pups

I was checking out the harbor seals and noticed a couple new pups. There one on each side of this photo by it’s mom. Lots of harbor seals in the water swimming around us today.sealputs


Here’s one of the pups.pup


And there is the other pup in this photo,  but it’s hard to see as it’s laying right beside it’s mom. The turkey vultures were just hanging around, possibly waiting for some more pups to be born?vultures


It’s going to rain

We went down to the end of the river and were just sitting around in our boats, when Ray says, there’s some big rain drops hitting the water. That should have been our Queue to put our rain pants on, but we weren’t quick enough and it wasn’t bad enough yet. However, Ray did have an umbrella and put it up, which was keeping him dry.

We were drifting up the river slowly as we went past these cormorants.cors


Osprey and the eagle

And just past the cormorants, an osprey flew over our heads from the rear with a fish. Some seagulls were following it and all of a sudden a bald eagle dove on the osprey and tried to get the fish it had. The osprey maneuvered  a couple times, then dropped the fish in the water. Better to lose a fish then your life. It was raining too hard and it happened too fast to get a camera out.

Caught in a squall

As we were getting awed by that action, the rain picked up and a lot of it turned to slushy hail. We hunkered down in our boats, but then the wind picked up real strong from our backside. Ray’s umbrella looked like it was getting the best of him. The wind was too strong for it and it looked like he might turn over. But he turned his umbrella down wind and the wind blew it past the open position which decreased the size of it which seemed to help a lot. Now, all this time, my boat is bouncing around in the water and I’m trying to keep the increased size of the waves out of my boat, but I’m thinking I need to get my waterproof camera out of the pack, but I couldn’t under these conditions.

I could see Ray heading for the shoreline, so I followed him and finally was able to get a camera out.

Here’s what we were dealing with and that’s Ray up ahead with his orange umbrella, almost to shore.rainray


I pulled in behind him and the rain was still pounding us. You can see the drops hit the water, big ones.rain


Ray says he’s all wet and was getting out. He turned his boat over to keep anymore water from getting into it.boaturn


I watched and stayed in my boat. Things weren’t too bad as you can see by Ray’s big smile. We should of put those rain pants on.wetray


We stayed there for another twenty minutes or so wondering if the rain was going to let up, or if we’d just have to paddle back in it.

It finally let up a little and we thought it might stop. So when it decreased to almost nothing we got back in our boats and headed towards the boat ramp. Of course, the rain started again as we paddled and things looked like this.morerain


Rescued the blue kayak

I went by the loose white kayak. It didn’t have a bow rope, so I couldn’t easily pull it and paddle at the same time so I left it there. When we got to the loose blue kayak, I was able to pull it as it had a bow rope, so I pulled it to the boat ramp.

Now, of course when we got to the boat ramp, the rain lifted and it looked like this, but we were a bit wet by now.jenner

We pulled our boats our of the water and then I went over to the café to tell them about their boats. They knew they were gone and were going to send someone out to find them, so I told them were the other one was that we left out there.

I headed for home, stopping to shop for my Boonville trip on the way.

The rest of the day, I prepped the van , loading things and checking oils and tires and such.

Headed for Boonville

I’m leaving for Boonville tomorrow. There’s no internet there, at the cabin, so I won’t be able to post. I may be able to post when we go kayaking on the Noyo in Fort Bragg. If not, it might be four or five days before I’ll be able to post again.

Nice day, even with a little rain. That just makes things more of an adventure.

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