A Day on the River ... May 17, 2016
When I heard that our Club was offered a few spots to accompany Billie Milholland of the North Saskatchewan Watershed Alliance (NSWA) on a photo trip of the North Saskatchewan River via jet boat, I quickly signed up, hoping that I would win the lottery to go if there were multiple respondents. As it turned out, I was the only respondent, so no lottery necessary – I got to go!
The goal was to capture images from the river of watershed flora, fauna and landscape. Local biologist, Melissa Logan, also from NSWA, was along for the trip as well. (Note: all three photographers were Nikonions – just thought I would point that out). Our Captain for the day was Morris Seiferling. He donated his jet boat, fuel and his skills to guide us up the river. Morris managed to navigate the river without any unwanted close encounters with rocks or logs on the river, which was quite low for this adventure.
At 10:00 a.m., our trip departed from Devon. We jetted upstream past Genesee Bridge, and stopped for lunch at a gravel pit near Keephills, where Range Road 33 runs into the river. After lunch we floated and jetted downstream, returning around 4:00 to Devon.
The day was full of photo ops. Highlights of sightings were: various hawk breeds; bald eagles; osprey; tons of Canada Geese; ducks breeds too numerous to count; pelicans; white tailed deer; swallows and their condos; blue heron; gold panners; sand falls; coal seams in rock faces; and tons of fauna and landscapes. All of these were documented with photos. The best photo that was not captured was a 4’ sturgeon jumping out of the river right in front of our boat (I did attach a sturgeon pic from another trip so you can appreciate what we saw). We tried to get a repeat performance for a photo op, but the dinosaur would not co-operate. Another photo intentionally missed was a naked man who seemed to think he was on Wreck Beach. A few photos showing highlights accompany this article. For more images see: https://www.flickr.com/gp/sheightyacres/7Fa3j0.
Special thanks to Billie for the invitation to our Club to accompany her on this adventure; to Morris for his boat for the day; and to Melissa who found out the hard way about the only rule on the boat – if your hat blows off, you have to put it back on full of water.
It was a great day out of the office.
Clayton Reitzel, IACC Member
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Updated December 15, 2017