Wildlife Photography from the Midwest USA

Low Head Dam

One of my favorite things to do is to go ahead and do that thing that never occurred to me.

I go to an area by the river probably ten times a year to photograph the shorebirds, but it never occurred to me that I could launch my kayak from the State park nearby. So I did.

A big sign near the boat ramp, which is meant for much bigger boats than my own, indicates a large area where there are No Boats Allowed.

My guess is that they don’t want people to accidentally go over the low head dam (also called a “weir”) and then subsequently die, which would result in a media frenzy and government labor to collect the dead, when it’s cheaper and easier just to put up a sign.

No matter. As long as I hug the shore, then I’m not only within the law, but I can get to within about 20 feet (6 meters) of the edge of the dam. I can prop a paddle blade inside a hole in a concrete structure there and lean an elbow on the paddle shaft in order to anchor the boat so that it doesn’t drift over the edge and cause a media frenzy. Then I can just sit and watch the gulls hanging out at the edge of the dam.

Now I have to wonder what else hasn’t occurred to me yet.

Water's Edge



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