Despite The Clouds A Pleasant And Reflective Walk Along Foster Joseph Sayers Lake.

Despite The Clouds A Pleasant And Reflective Walk Along Foster Joseph Sayers Lake.

Bald eagle State morning hike Nature Inn (11 of 50)
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Although I was tired from my hikes in the Bald Eagle State Park  on Saturday , I was up to watch the dawn appear over  Foster Joseph Sayers Lake  early Sunday morning. Once again the high cirrus clouds were  illuminated by the rising sun.

Unfortunately the clouds thickened soon after the sun rose and the sky was overcast when I left for another  morning hike.  I walked down from the Nature Inn  to the Butterfly Trail.  The overcast sky, and cool temperature near 50 degrees made it seem more like a walk in the Fall rather then the middle of May. 

But the new green leaves  on the trees and the song of the birds told me it was Spring.  I saw a few sparrows, an indigo bunting,  this eastern towhee,

and this northern flicker as I began my walk. 

Instead of following the Butterfly Trail I decided to walk down to the lake where I hoped to see a great blue heron, an osprey or possibly even a bald eagle.  The lake is actually a 1700 acre  reservoir built in 1971 and named after the gallant, local  World War II hero Foster Joseph Sayers. Sayers made the ultimate sacrifice for his Country charging an enemy outpost to save the lives of his fellow soldiers. There is a monument honoring him  along the lake but I wasn’t able to find it on my walk on Saturday. I felt I had to post a link to this local hero after which the lake was named. 

The clouds continued to thicken as I now followed the Woapalanne Trail along the lake. This trail also has some local history associated with it. It is named after Chief Woapalanne, or Chief Bald Eagle, a chief of the Lenape or Delaware tribe of Native Americans that lived in the area in the 1700’s. The creek and park are also named after him. The trail was muddy and wet from the heavy rains we had on Friday Evening.

The trail led to boat launch which had only a few cars were parked in its large lot.  I would think there would have been much more boaters and fishermen had the weather been nicer. I watched a few fishermen sitting in their boats on this dreary morning. 

I also saw these boats from the Penn State crew team. I often watched crew teams rowing in rivers on my travels. It looked liked these haven’t been used because of the corona virus restrictions. 

As I continued my walk a saw a few green herons fly off ahead of my and finally saw a water bird, this osprey that flew overhead. The clouds and poor lighting did not allow me to get good photographs of the osprey.

After the osprey sighting I followed an abandoned boat ramp road  to the lake. Here I had a view of the town of Howard across the lake. I began thinking about the homes I saw, the folks who lived in them and their lives. I do this often on my travels.

After some thinking, I set out on my hike again and found this old sandal along the trail.  Once again my mind began to reflect on how long it was there, week, months years?  Who lost it? Under what circumstances?  Were they young or old? Where did they live? So many questions. And it reminded me of my first hikes with my dad. I wasn’t in grade school yet and, when we were out hiking, usually for wild edible “red top” mushrooms I would do the same thing. Even at that young age if  I saw a soda can, an old rusted can or the remains of a fire I would ponder the same questions in my mind. I have  had this curiosity all of my life. My dad encouraged it with books, nature television shows, trips to the library and mainly with his time teaching me so much. I was lucky. And this curiosity  has taken me to many wonderful places  and on many  interesting adventures. Thanks dad, miss you so much.

Well,  I reflected on memories of dad and other family members I have lost, and those still living as I continued my hike. The trail ended at a beach and picnic area. The beach was fenced off and appears it may be closed. I’m not sure if this is just a seasonal fence or whether it was more permanent.

Leaving the beach I walked into the open meadows near the Frog Pond and got back on the Butterfly Trail. 

I sat under the tree next to the pond and hoped to see one of the green herons that live here. 

No luck with the herons but a lot of red-winged blackbirds and a few crows.

I left the pond and followed the Butterfly trail back to the Inn.  Along the way I saw a few bright goldfinches adding their color to this dreary morning. 

Sparrows were everywhere. I have a hard time telling them apart but I think this was a song sparrow. 

There were also many catbirds   chattering along the trail.

And I was able to get a better photo of the brown thrasher that lives near the Inn.Here is a link to some more photographs from my morning hike along the shores of Foster Joseph Sayers lake. Bald Eagle State Park Morning walk May 17 2020. 

It was around 9:30 a.m when I returned to the Nature Inn after my 5 1/2 mile hike. I felt some rain drops just as I arrived. I had another delicious breakfast delivered to my room, and showered and packed. 

I had about a 1/2 until check-out so I  took some photographs of this beautiful and nature friendly Inn. I loved it and would recommend it to anyone.

I know I will return. Here is a link to some photographs of the Nature Inn. Bald Eagle State park Nature Inn May 17 2020 

It was a wonderful escape from the the confinement brought about by the corona virus. But we must remember, as the virus has taught us again, we are just residents on this wonderful planet. We cannot control nature but I fear we may destroy it. We must protect what is left of our beautiful but fragile natural environment. 

Memories are written in the sand that we walk on and cemented by the love in our hearts.”
― Anthony T. Hincks

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