Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Sparky is Prepared!

Sparky has learned her lesson, the next time she goes out kayaking, she said she will be better prepared. Sparky decided to head out to the Jigg's Landing right outside her backyard of her subdivision and get back in her boat today, with her NEW phone, and her NEW Lifeproof case…waterproof, drop proof, snow proof--hahahaha, frost proof, shock proof, everything proof. Lifeproof is a nice case--you have to water test it first, so Sparky did…..

This was the second one Sparky tried. The first one leaked, very very slightly, just a tiny drop inside the case. You're supposed to put it underwater with something heavy on top of it holding it down under for an hour to see if any water bubbles show up inside, or any water leaks inside. Sparky is always tempted to forego the water test, having one of these cases a long time ago, but after dropping her phone in the water and having to get a new one a couple of days ago, she thought she'd better do the water test since the first one failed. This one passed with flying colors. O-o-o-o-h, pretty in pink!

Dry bag? Check
Waterproof camera case inside the dry bag?  Check
Plenty of snacks and water and food that's good to eat and that will provide energy?
Peanut M & M's-- Check
Phone in waterproof case inside dry bag? Check
Paddle? Life vest?  Check, check….

Off she went, but not before checking out the three little Great Horned owlets in their nest WA-A-A-Y up high in a pine tree with mama nearby in the parking lot at Jiggs…Great Horned owls are the biggest owls that can take over another bird's nest and keep them from it while they lay their eggs. The nest that the horned owls took over was an osprey nest..This is the ever vigilant mama….

Photos are with a Canon 30X zoom and a shaky hand…Sorry about that!
They are so cute! They still have their downy feathers….
But they are getting antsy to fly….They are starting to move around more in the nest the last couple of days…The little red spot next to the eye is the owl's ear, Sparky thinks….They seem quite big!

A lot of people have gotten wind that the nest is there and amateur photographers show up now on a regular basis… The local birding people have walled off the pine tree stand to keep people from getting too close to the base of the tree with the nest. There are signs that say, "no lifts" among other things. Guess some lady here locally, hired a fork lift operator for 200 bucks to have her lifted up to eye level to an eagle's nest down on Caruso Road just a little ways from Sparky and Eldo's subdivision, so she could get some great photos of the eagles in their nest. Gad, what some people will do to get THE nature shot! (AHEM! says E., clearing his throat.)  Sparky WAS NOT THE LADY WHO DID THAT, for the record, she just wants you to know. SERIOUSLY…..

In the parking lot, Sparky talked to a lady today who had a 700 zoom lens which was DOUBLED!  She had it on a big tripod…Sparky will settle for her little Canon point and shoot for now…Maybe some day, a bigger lens will be on her Christmas list.  OK, off to kayak the reservoir at Jigg's Landing and see what there was heading towards the dam this time….Not much…

So Sparky turned back and headed towards the Braden River channel…She was just moseying along and decided to pull up in a shady area to get out some snacks…she heard a splash behind her, but didn't think much about it..there were lots of little blue herons fishing all over the channel…She pushed off from the shady area, and headed out into the channel, munching on some Fritos…All of a sudden, she caught movement out of the corner of her eye---GATOR ALERT! There was a fairly BIG gator swimming along right next to her kayak! Sparky about lost her Fritos and her paddle in the river channel as she hastily tried to get her camera out of her camera waterproof case and out of the waterproof dry bag. By this time, the gator had decided to move away from the kayak…maybe it was the smell of the Fritos, or maybe he just decided Sparky's kayak didn't look much like lunch…tee hee……The most important thing was he was heading AWAY from the kayak and over to the riverbank. Sparky headed in the same direction momentarily and slowly…Then when she saw him sink like a submarine near the shore, she decided to move along back towards the main reservoir lake…That was a close enough encounter for her….He didn't seem too concerned at all where Sparky was going. We were just cohabiting the river together, he and I…….
View from the kayak TOWARDS the bank

It was a wonderful day out on the water….Perfect weather…..Lots of herons--little blues, tri-coloreds, AND an alligator…WOO HOO!


  1. Great story. love the pictures of those little owlets. People do have trouble giving animals their space. But the lady with the lift should have been fined. Wonder if the owl will choose a different place next time so she doesn't have to worry so much.

  2. Love the owlets and your pictures were great.

    Glad to hear you have a dry you have to remember to put your phone and camera inside before you enter or exit the kayak. :)

  3. Cute little owlets! Glad you are all prepared with your dry bags and life case, etc. One of the things that frustrates me is putting everything in the dry bag while we're in the water, then a photo opp happens and I have to drag it all out again :)

  4. a very productive day. . .dry bag and all. . .yaa!