1/10/2019 Balfour/Klickitat Bald Eagles
We met up with friends in Cascade Locks, then drove to the Balfour/Klickitat wildlife viewing area near Lyle, Washington. Early January is bald eagle nesting season there, and we saw many eagles in the trees across the pond.
I watched these two eagles for a while – as they looked around.
For every white head in the trees, there were two or three brown juvenile eagles. They are as big as the mature eagles, but harder to spot because they don’t get their white feathers fully until they are four years old.
We witnessed a lone salmon struggling up the stream, and then watched as a juvenile bald eagle grabbed it with his talons, pulled it onto the adjacent mudflat, and ate it. Other eagles joined in after a while. It was the circle of life before our eyes – not pretty, but the way of nature.
We also saw two great blue herons on the nearby cliffs.
Shortly after this drama, a couple of dozen eagles flew in circles above the area for five minutes. My camera telephoto lens is not quite up to clear pictures of all these events, but I enjoyed watching and marveling at the beauty.
After a quick lunch we walked up the nearby Labyrinth trail to the tall Jefferson pine landmark tree. We saw Mt Hood, the Columbia Hills and eastern gorge with snow dusting, and a few early wildflowers on on this misty, cloudy day. A good day with friends. (5.8 miles/1000 feet/#2 for 2019)
View under the Bridge of the Gods in Cascade Locks, our meeting place.