This afternoon I decided to greet the predicted warmer temperatures while heading upriver on the Assabet. Skies were cloudy when I launched but brightened a little as I paddled to Egg Rock. Once on the Assabet, I soon recovered an interesting bottle. Wrested from the ice was an empty bottle of Christian Brothers Tawny Port and that reminded me that I have some Tawny Porto at home. Plans for my apres paddle beverage changed from hot cocoa to Tawny Porto on the spot.
At Dodge Rock, I encountered thin ice that had reached across the main channel to the rock formation and required a little icebreaking to get through. This cold snap is letting up just in time. Another few frigid days like Monday and the ice would have been more resistant to my kayak's bow.
At Spencer Brook a belted kingfisher joined me and we headed upriver together for a half mile or so. The Muscovite ducks were all out of the water and resting on the shore. Mallards were in the river and possibly a pair of wood ducks.
A different belted kingfisher greeted me at the mouth of Nashoba Brook and stayed in the area while I headed a little ways beyond the commuter rail bridge in Concord Junction. Where a small stream enters on the river's east side between the rail bridge and the Rt. 62 bridge, I recovered several plastic bags. One of the bags was an empty 25 lb bag of water softener crytals.
With a dozen empty containers onboard, the kingfisher and I started heading downriver. Just before reaching the Rt. 2 bridge the kingfisher bid me adieu and I continued downriver without an escort.
By the time I reached Spencer Brook again,my trash count was up to 16 and the other kingfisher was there waiting for my arrival. He did a few of his fly-ahead moves before disappearing and leaving me to finish my paddle alone. During this last stretch of river I was able to enjoy listening to a band from Newfoundland called Great Big Sea doing the song "England" from their recently released "Fortune's Favor". Check it out at:
Sort of a sea shanty sound that provided a nice cadence for paddling home.
I arrived at my takeout location with 19 empty containers bringing my YTD total to 2553.