Kayaking the Merrimack River

Monday, September 6 (Labor Day): One of my New Hampshire friends and I spent a wonderful afternoon on the Merrimack River just north of Concord, New Hampshire. It was perfect weather when we launched, not too warm, mostly sunny. We stopped for lunch on one of the many sandy shores:

There was even a perfectly situated dead tree to sit on! But it was clouding up fast, and it was sprinkling by the time we finished eating – and really raining, with strong winds (enough to try to carry my kayak away – but I had my hands on it and we hauled it up and tied it to that log!) and stinging rain. But it didn’t last long, and the sun was out again.

We enjoyed the flora

and fauna:

We watched that not very shy Little Green Heron for quite a while. There were also Great Blue Herons, but none of the photos came out well.

With all of those sandbars, this is one of the few that is accessible from the road. It is well populated on most nice days during the summer; after that storm rolled through, there was no one left. From there it wasn’t far to the take out just around the corner, on the Contoocook River.

Currently Blooming

This is what is blooming in my yard as August becomes September. They are mostly wildflowers, as most of my yard is meadow. There are at least three different goldenrods, three different asters – I didn’t take photos of everything, but this is representative.

ORFS at McDaniels Marsh

This Outdoor Recreation for Seniors outing was cancelled – but not until I’d already left. As it turned out, I wasn’t the only one who didn’t get the memo – the leaders were there (they decided that sun coming through was reason enough to head out) and they called another friend; another couple had also come without getting the message. It was mostly cloudy – but hot and muggy when the sun did come out. This is a great place for wildlife.

Kayaking Otter Pond with ORFS

Tuesday, June 29: Another Tuesday, another gathering of ORFS (Outdoor Recreation for Seniors), this time on Otter Pond in New London, New Hampshire. It was HOT!!! I’m not sure quite how hot, but unpleasantly so. I started out by swimming before getting in the kayak, had an unintentional swim flipping the boat reentering after lunch, and dunked one last time before getting in the camper and driving away. And gee, I never overheated!

The Sheep Laurel is still blooming, splashing hot pink along the lakeside.
A float plane used to live at this house; I’ve not seen it for a couple of years, though.

That house really belongs in the Color Choices series, but I’m putting it here, instead.

It was great to be on the water, in the water, around the water on this very hot and humid day. I’m grateful to live in New England where we have lots of water for recreation, and kayaks, and good friends.

Kayaking Knapp Pond I

Sunday, May 16: A friend and I went out for an evening paddle so that she could try out her new sit-on-top kayak.

Like the day before on Knapp Pond II, it was a beautiful day. There weren’t as many turtles that late in the day, but still quite a few.

These violets were not quite as tiny as the ones on Long Pond in New York, but almost.
And seeing painted trillium is always a treat – it doesn’t grow on my land.

Bloodroot is Blooming

When I first moved here, I knew where to see bloodroot in the spring – and it wasn’t on my land! About 12 years ago, it started showing up along the driveway, and now it has spread to be a reliable ephemeral sign of spring.

New England Asters

For several weeks, the asters have been blooming, starting with the smaller paler ones. This past week the ones with deeper color have come into their own. None of these plants were planted – they all volunteer in various places along my driveway.

Kayaking Stoughton Pond, Vermont

Saturday, September 19: One of a long string of gorgeous fall days, with a bit of nip to the air – a group of us with the Black River Action Team went to a local pond to see if we could find flowering rush, an invasive plant that has been found downriver. We were glad to fail in that endeavor, but we did see a lot of other plants and flowers, and learned about some that we might mistake for the target plant.

Checking out the beaver lodge –