Day 10: Day of eagles
I woke up this morning with most of the mosquito still wanting to get me. A breeze piked up as I packed and they disappeared. I got into my boat dry and set out for a long day of a very twisty river. I knew it might be off to a good start when I had a pair of golden eagles take off from their nest. This nest was 100 yards from where I camped the night before. The day would be filled with eagles. Within a mile, I saw a bald eagle and then another one perched in the trees. They took flight and what a sight that is to see. It is hard to describe the sense of beauty I feel as the open their wing and lift off. Their size is unreal. It is something you just do not get to see in the zoos. The river was filled with bending “S” turns with random strait ways. My energy level was not at it’s highest, but i was still captivated by all that I was seeing and experiencing. I have not got lost on the scale and magnitude of this trip.
I passed under State Highway 2. I saw cars and semi trailers for the first time and felt a little bummed. I have been in the wild of Minnesota for the past week and I have been loving it. There is just something about being able to get out and explore the unknown. As the day wore on, I would end up seeing 14 eagles that day. At one point, I just needed to get out and stretch. I was feeling cramped up and needed to move my legs. I stopped by this grass brume and pulled over. I jumped out and simply walked around for a bit. I had a snack and was ready to get back at it. I eyed Schoolcraft State Park as my end destination. It would be around 25 miles for the day. I was within about 2 miles of it when a couple said hi to me. They had a place right on the river. I pulled up to their dock so that I could hear them and not have to fight the current. Sandy and Jeff offered me a place to crash if I would like. I could not say no. I got out of the boat and talked with them for a bit. They had to run to Grand Rapids, but allowed me to set my stuff up in their camper and go in to take a well needed shower. It felt good and I was relaxed for the evening. They offered me some fresh roasted pork and some bbq sauce. It was quite good. I also had the best glass of ice water….ever. It is the little things that you do not get on the river that you learn to appreciate on land. Ice and cold beverages is one of the first things. I stayed up that night talking with Sandy and their 18 year old daughter, Emma. I asked if they wanted to chat and I ended up offering Emma some life tips. They are the kind I wish I had the opportunity to know when I was her age. She listened with open ears and a smile and I chatted away. I decided to take the next day off to work on blogs, social media channels and because of a pending line of thunder storms. I slept peacefully in the camper as I called it another good day.