Wednesday, March 18, 2015

On Eagle's Wings in Cherry Creek State Park


We've had a bit of a warm front again this week, with temperatures in the 60's and 70's. Most of the snow in my neighborhood has melted and some of the trees are beginning to grow buds. Unfortunately, the snow pack in the high Rocky Mountains is below normal for this time of the year. It is not good news for the western states which depend on snow melt in the mountains to feed their rivers and reservoirs. We may still have a few more snowstorms before spring is over, which would be a very good thing, even if having nice weather has been pleasant. This view is of Mt. Evans--the highest Rocky Mountain closest to Denver.  Did you see my blog post this summer where my husband and I took a ride to the summit of this mountain! It is approximately 14,270 feet high and the road towards the top is the highest paved road in the United States! We had to hike the last quarter mile! Click here if you would like to view that post. (All photos and photo collages will enlarge for easier viewing if clicked on)


On one of the beautiful days this week my husband and I drove over to Cherry Creek State Park and bought a year's pass to all the state parks in Colorado.  Cherry Creek State Park is 4,200 acres large with a 880 acres reservoir, surrounded by 35 miles of mixed use trails and natural areas. Over 40 species of animals can be seen in the park, including eastern cottontail rabbits. coyote, beavers, fox, muskrat, raccoon, ground squirrels, mule deer, white tail deer, and prairie dogs.  It is also the migratory path for many birds and raptors. There are campsites in the park as well as facilities for model airplane flying, a family shooting practice range, horseback riding and picnic grounds


Wetlands in the park are the habitats for water fowl,  and they also help to filter the waters that lead into the reservoir.


Local fishermen can fish from boats or the shore for walleyes, trout, wipers, large mouth bass, white crappies, bluegills tiger muskies and gizzard shads.


I saw and heard many nesting Black Billed Magpies high up in the trees.  Magpies have very loud voices, and a nest full of them was a cacophony of sounds. 


I was hoping to see some bald eagles and after a drive around for about a half hour I finally spied one in a tree, far on the horizon. 


It watched a Magpie fly by.


He sat there for quite awhile while I kept changing camera lenses, trying to zoom in closer.


He finally flew to the top of a closer tree top where I was able to get this last photo before he quickly flew away. I don't think I'll ever tire of seeing eagles flying overhead. They are such magnificent birds!

"They that wait on the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk and not faint." ~Isaiah 40:31





I am happy to announce that the winner of my St. Patrick's Day give away was chosen by Random.Org as comment number 10.  That comment was by Sarah of the blog "Hyacinths For the Soul"


Congratulations, Sarah! This copy of Tracy Stern's "Tea Party Cookbook" will soon be on your way! Thank you to all who commented!


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29 comments:

ladyfi said...

What a beautiful area. Sorry to hear that the snow cover isn't that deep though - won't be good when summer comes around.

Your shot of the eagle is majestic!

Kris said...

Those shots of the Bald Eagle are fantastic! I am awe struck when I see one up in IG Bear or Yosemite. They are magnificent creatures! Beautiful shots, as always Pat!!
XO Kris

Parsimonious Perfection said...

Gorge shot of the eagle! I'll be sharing that one with my son, he adores bald eagles!

From the Kitchen said...

Such beautiful scenery! I love the layered mountains and the birds--all of it. I hope you continue to take us on your Colorado travels.

Best,
Bonnie

Vee said...

I am sorry that your area has not had enough snow. I'd love to send you tomorrow's storm. =D The mountains sure do look beautiful. The final eagle photo is marvelous! What an exquisite bird. We are so happy to have two nesting pairs in our town. Congrats to your winner!

happywonderer.com said...

We are really low on snow in our mountains here...
Love the shots of the Eagle.

Linda Kay said...

An awesome eagle and those sky shots are lovely...not a cloud in site on some.

Barbara said...

Awesome photography, Pat! The eagle pictures and that first one of Mount Evans are just stunning!

We have just returned from a quick trip to Orlando where Spring is in full form. It's always a shock to return home during these Spring Break trips to snow falling outside!

But yes, we do need the snow for our water supply!!

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

You got a beautiful shot of him! Aren't they just so majestic? And I love the scripture verse...one of my all-time favorites.

We do not have much snow on our local mountains either this year. It has not been a good year for the skiers!

Great photos...as always!

The Gathering Place said...

Pat, your top photo is just stunning! I love the snow covered peaks, with the foothills below, and the color variations at each different altitude. You have a real photo taking talent (and the setting doesn't hurt)! j Thanks for sharing.

Nellie said...

Congratulations to Sarah!

We are so dependent on the weather systems to provide us with the water that is needed. I hope your area will receive some more moisture. Wonderful pictures of the bald eagle!

Betsy Adams said...

Hi, Love that first picture showing the snow on Mt. Evans. Hope the area (and western states) get more snow...

Does it cost to get into state parks in CO? Our state parks are free --but I wish we did pay something --which would help maintain the parks...

Great pictures from Cherry Creek State Park. LOVE the eagle especially.
Hugs,
Betsy

Michelle said...

Great shots of the Eagle!

Linda (More Fun Less Laundry) said...

Hi Pat, Congratulations to Sarah! I am sure we will see some wonderful goodies from her when she has a chance to read the tea book. We have so much snow back east and we are expecting 3-5" tomorrow for the first day of spring! My husband flew into Denver yesterday and was surprised at the warm weather! It seems like your eagle wanted to pose for you and you certainly got a wonderful shot of him in all his glory. I never will tire of seeing them either. Linda

Sheila said...

Hello Pat, I am amazed that you got such co-operation from the eagle! He must have realized you just needed one perfect snapshot. That's a terrific idea to buy a State Park pass! Have a great week!

Gracie said...

It seems all so peaceful and relaxing....

Rue said...

Eagles look so human, don't you think?

I hope you get more snow.

xo,
rue

Ciao Chow Linda said...

Wow Pat - you got phenomenal shots of that egle. Brava. I love all your photos.

Joyful said...

Beautiful photos. I especially like the eagle. Where I live we only got snow early, in November. The ski slopes had to make artificial snow just over a week ago so it probably means we too don't have enough of a snow pack. that is the scary part of not getting a lot of winter snow. Hoping it all "works out". Happy Spring!

bailey-road.com said...

Such a beautiful area. The Eagle is magnificent.

Valerie said...

A great series of shots, Pat. Such majestic mountains and a splendid capture of the eagle.

Adam Jones said...

Fantastic shots of the Eagle.

A Quiet Corner said...

So nice to hear that someone else loves them too! I monitor a nest next door to me, reporting to our local Div of Wildlife. They are AWESOME creatures!...:)JP

eileeninmd said...

Hello Pat, I love the view of the mountains! Cool close up of the eagle! The magpie is a neat bird too! Thank you for linking up, happy weekend!

Yogi♪♪♪ said...

Your closeup of the eagle is outstanding. I am so glad that Colorado has such an extensive state park system.

Margaret Adamson said...

Cracking series of images. Have a lovely weekend

Gunilla B├Ąck said...

Beautiful scenery! The eagle is very majestic.

carol l mckenna said...

Panoramic and magnificent shots ~ especially the majestic eagle!

Happy Week to you,
artmusedog and carol

PS ~ Good Harbor is a great book and very beautiful beach here on Cape Ann MA

bailey-road.com said...

Wonderful photos. It is always thrilling to see eagles.