Sunday, February 21, 2010

Busy As A Beaver

The sound of hunting guns awake me before 0700. I lie in my warm down bag and wonder why guys like to shoot beautiful canada geese. I get up and see ice on the windows/deck and the cockpit temperature is 34 degrees. After a mug of hot coffee, I decide to walk part of the island; the lower end. Mid way across I see a set of deer tracks going in both directons. The island is devoid of leaves and has been mowed, so visiblity is good. No deer sightings, but I can hear all the geese and sandhill cranes honking and cackling over on Sauvie Island, the wildlife refuge.

There is one large trawler docked on the west side of the island. Many of the large leaning cottonwood trees have been removed, as in past years it has been known for some to fall towards the docks crushing boats.
I head out on the downriver trail and see my first beaver action. A freshly chewed tree beaming with the dawn's sun on it. Isn't nature just magical? Last September we noted many beaver swimming along this shore, so it looks as though they have spent the winter here. And busy they have been from looking at all the downed trees.

The day is beautiful and begins to warm up, gettinng to 70 degrees in the cockpit by late afternoon. I wash Shatoosh off with river water, clean the galley, and decide to tackle that anchor light again. My dock friends on the 33 ft Nauticat have showed me around their beautiful boat and we are talking about LED lights. I tell him my problems about opening it up. So, together we get it open and I discover the bulb is a festoon type which I don't believe can be changed over to a LED, but will find out. I clean the inside of all the spider webs and have a hard time getting it back together. Now, I know about the anchor light and, also know, I am filled with perseverence, patience and fortitude.

Orion, the Nauticat, has a beautiful log book cover made of sapeale wood with a brass plate on it saying Weems and Plath. He got it from West Marine. It is very unique so asked if I could take a picture. Sapeale wood is the wood that is in Shatoosh. It is banded or striated giving it an interesting look. Another noteable items is the laser carved ship inside the paper weight. From every angle you can see the different shape of the ship. My favorite was looking from abaft the beam.

With the sun shinning and no wind, the eagles gave us quite a show with up to 10 flying overhead, as many as 5 in the trees, whistling quite some interesting conversations to each other. Then the flocks of trumpeter swans came flying in along with hundreds of geese. It was quite the show. The sun is setting behind Coon again and I have had a delightful day. There is nothing like being on a boat and doing all the boating things.