Tag Archives: goose island state park

January 14, 2014 Moving Day

MH andMooseGoose Island State Park to Galveston Island State Park

PLUS: Finally some Whooping Cranes

Whooping crane in flight

Whooping crane in flight

As always, click on any image for a larger, sharper version.

Moving day has arrived and today I will make the 200+ mile trip north up the coast to Galveston Island State Park where I have a reservation for a week’s stay. However, before loading up the Prius, I decided to see if I could get some more nice sunrise shots and headed out to the docks in Lamar.

Great blue heron in flight before sunrise

Great blue heron in flight before sunrise

Great blue heron in flight before sunrise

Great blue heron in flight before sunrise

 

It is amazing to me to see the difference in color and intensity that the lack of clouds can make on a sunrise.

 

 

 

Also, just the slightest of early morning breezes completely erases the gorgeous sunrise color reflections on the surface of the water, and these are exactly the conditions that I found this morning, so not a lot of nice shots like I got over the weekend.

Since this was my last day here and since it was clear with no fog around, I decided to go to the point of land at the end of the pastures and wait the hour or so it would take to get enough light to shoot some whooping cranes IF they happened to come in overhead via this route this morning.

Great Blue Heron flight at sunrise

Great Blue Heron flight at sunrise

While waiting I did get a few shots of a great blue heron wading around and then taking off when spooked by some shotgun blasts by some nearby duck hunters.

Whooping cranes in flight

Whooping cranes in flight

Whooping crane in flight

Whooping crane in flight

Then, after an hour or so wait, a family of three whoopers came flying in, following the water’s edge, directly overhead, and I was finally, after 3 weeks, able to get a couple of somewhat decent flight shots.

I left Goose Island and headed north on Route 35 around 9AM. After taking a shortcut on FR 1862 and FM 616 around Palacios, I rejoined 35 north to Alvin, picking up Texas 6 and then I45 to Galveston Island and 342 to Seawall Blvd.south to the State Park, arriving a little after 1PM. A pleasant though unspectacular route with good roads and little traffic.

Whooping crane in flight

Whooping crane in flight

Whooping crane in flight

Whooping crane in flight

 

 

January 12, 2014 Goose Island, Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

With the sunrise actually being visible here the past two mornings, I have finally had an opportunity to attempt some sunrise shots along the Lamar waterfront just north of the campground.

As always, click on any image for a larger, sharper version.

Setting out decoys

Setting out decoys

One of the duck hunters probably responsible in part for the absence of whooping cranes, but the fog hanging over the water and catching the sunrise colors, made him an interesting photo subject.

 

Cloud reflections

Cloud reflections

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

 

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

 

 

 

 

 

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Still no opportunities to get any whooping crane shots on this trip.

Lamar dock sunrise

Lamar dock sunrise

Lamar dock sunrise

Lamar dock sunrise

Goose Island sunrise

Goose Island sunrise

 

 

 

 

 

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

 

 

 

 

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

Sunrise, Lamar Texas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

January 10, 2014 Goose Island, Texas

White pelicans on Kelley Slough, N. Dakota

White pelicans

As always, click on any image for a larger, sharper version.

Yesterday, drizzle and fog all day and night, today, more of the same….and then, at precisely 4 PM, a cause for celebration, the sun actually poked through, so off I went! Nothing in the pastures, not a single whooping crane to be found, so, not wanting to waste precious sunlight, I headed to Rockport to check the shore line and docks for whatever might be there.

White pelican yoga

White pelican yoga

 

White pelican takeoff sequence

White pelican takeoff

Brown pelican

Brown pelican

 

 

 

 

 

In Fulton Harbor, I spotted a small group of white pelicans standing and preening on the remains of an old cement bulkhead, just a few feet from shore. The setting sun was hitting them at just about the perfect angle, so I set up and decided to stay with them, hoping they would eventually take off and I might just get a decent flight shot.

White pelican in flight

White pelican in flight

I think I did!

White pelican takeoff sequence

White pelican takeoff sequence

This one is 4 images stitched together in Photoshop to capture flight takeoff.

 

Caracara

Caracara

On the way back to camp, I did one loop around the pastures and happened to spot a caracara atop a light pole at one of the docks on the bay and stopped to get a few shots.

Caracara

Caracara

Caracara

Caracara

White pelican in flight

White pelican in flight

 

 

 

 

 

White pelican in flight

White pelican in flight

White pelican in flight

White pelican in flight

 

 

 

 

January 9, 2014 Goose Island, Texas

Great blue heron foggy flight

Great blue heron foggy flight

Out real early this morning even though the campground was completely socked in with fog, hoping to find better conditions in the pastures. No such luck!

Whooping cranes in the fog

Whoopers! This is what I am fighting almost every day!

I am not posting this image because I am proud of it, just to let you know why there aren’t any great whooping crane images this trip down here. These are the weather conditions I am encountering pretty much every day and this is the distance the whooping cranes are consistently keeping from anyone with a camera. The top image of a blue heron in flight skimming over the water only 40 feet from me would have been a keeper with a little light. I have never been able to catch one in flight with an outstretched neck like this, they normally travel with their long neck curled back into their chest. But with the fog and mist, thus absence of light, there is no way to get any fine detail in the image, note how you really can’t even see any indication of the water he is skimming over. If not for the reflection of his wingtips, I would assume this was a shot of him against the sky, not flying 3 feet over the surface of the bay.

Goose Island doe's breakfast interrupted

Goose Island doe’s breakfast interrupted

Returning to the campsite, I ran into this doe browsing right on the side of the entry road and got this shot of her facial contortions while downing her breakfast.

As always, click on any image for a larger, sharper version.

Goose Island doe's breakfast interrupted

Goose Island doe

Without the contortions, she actually was kind of attractive.

Flotilla of ducks at my campsite

Flotilla of ducks at my campsite

 

Flotilla of ducks at my campsite

Flotilla of ducks at my campsite

Back at the campsite, while processing images, I happened to look up and see a couple hundred Pintails ( ducks ) bobbing and feeding within a hundred feet of my motorhome. This is just one of the reasons I am so fond of this campground, if only they would provide some decent weather so I could photograph these guys.