Tag Archive: loon


Kezar Lake, July 18-28, 2012


Our time this year at Kezar was nothing like the vacations of my youth where my grandfather called the shots, the routine was exacting, and the life style, rustic. Up until this trip, my husband and I had a busy summer filled with unplanned medical issues, (which have mostly been resolved), as well as trips and events that I wouldn’t exactly call “relaxing”. We were so ready for some rejuvenation time, and 10 days spent “in camp” on Kezar Lake is just the ticket! However, preparations for the trip are a little more involved than going to a “resort” where all your creature comforts are taken care of for you. Although there are blankets in camp, we have to bring up our own bedding. We also need to roughly plan our menus and figure out whatever other necessities we need prior to leaving home. On our way into camp we shop at a major grocery store to purchase these things. The local store nearest camp, The Center Lovell Market, carries a good many things, and I’m impressed with it’s selections. However, it still is a small store, and often an item or two is not carried. This one shopping trip basically holds us for the duration, and we supplement our groceries as needed from the Center Lovell store.

Once we settle into camp, with beds made and groceries put away, it’s time to get serious about the main reason for being there … “chillin'”! And that is just what we did.

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Good Morning, Kezar – as taken from our bedroom upstairs!

Morning coffee was either on the porch or the dock. We lingered – and breakfast often blended into lunch.

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If not on the dock, most of life is lived on the porch!

Dock time! Swimming happened anytime we felt the need for a cool, refreshing break. I had my camera nearby — usually with the 100-400 zoom lens attached — with me to record our time and whatever wildlife we might encounter…

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1. A loon pops up not far from the dock. I think this is what kept me so vigilant with my camera, as one never knew when a loon would appear close by in photography distance. It happened more than once during our stay. They are such beauties! I love their breeding plumage!
2. We have these spiders who live under the dock and either in or under our canoe – not sure. This fear kept me from taking the canoe out at all during our stay, as I didn’t want to get out in the middle of the lake and find one of them crawling around inside the canoe with me! I don’t know what kind of spider they are, but don’t believe they are harmful. However, they *are* are large. I also know they are more scared of us than we are of them because if I leaned nearer them to get the photograph, they often would scamper away.

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1. There seemed to always be a spider on the edge of the canoe!
2. The dragon flies were most beautiful – and there were many of them.

There are things about the view from the dock that I often would zero in on in my photographs:

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I am intrigued with this boathouse that is on one of the islands across the lake. The sunlight catches the roof at mid morning giving off a bright glow on both the roof and the reflection on the lake. But – in the afternoon, one can see it’s pretty green color.

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1. Wouldn’t you like to live in this cabin – sitting on top of this hill looking down over Kezar? Nice boathouse, too!
2. Cloud cover was often the subject for my photographs. I enjoyed how much it changed.

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Water fun: water skiing, sailing and kayaking!

At the end of the day, we either had cocktails on the dock, on the porch, or inside the cabin, then dinner. We ate in camp most of the time, but also had a dinner out at Ebenezer’s Pub twice (for some great microbrewery beer!) and Pleasant Point Inn once. On one occasion we had breakfast, and then another time, lunch at the little restaurant at the Center Lovell Market. It was a nice interlude, and a place to quickly check email on our phones, as they have wifi! There is next to no cell phone service, nor do we have internet or TV reception in camp.

We had one of the most gorgeous sunsets at Pleasant Point Inn…

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Salad presentation is everything!

As I think back on our 10 days in camp, we didn’t “do” all that much. In a way I wish we had done more like take rides in the canoe / kayak, or taken a road trip to Portland, or another place of interest in Maine. Bottom line: we were so incredibly lazy! However, we left feeling much better about life and ourselves. Sometimes it’s good to swear off technology (like TV and internet) and live simply with just a camera in hand, and a good book to read.

Returning to “civilization” is not always easy, although, for this technology junkie, I was glad to return to internet and TV! In addition, it’s interesting how one is so attuned to hearing background noises of civilization – like traffic sounds, horns beeping, ambulances, TV noises, household air conditioning, etc. We blot it out from one’s conscious attention. However these sounds are not present when one is on Kezar, and are replaced by the nature’s sounds: loons, an occasional bull frog, wind in the trees, rain on the roof, the lapping of lake water against the shoreline rocks, and just plain silence. Returning back to “civilization noises” is almost too much stimuli. Until one begins to again blot these sounds out, it can be a bit overwhelming.

I have so many stories of many other years at Kezar, and I’d like to compile them in a few entries here. As I think on them, they will become entries of their own… Later on that.


As I said in my last entry, on the day of the earthquake and tsunami, a friend and I went to a beach on Port Royal Sound, which is not far from my house.  Because it’s not directly on the ocean, it’s a bit more sheltered and the water more “quiet”.  The waves are more gentle, though the tides still affect the water.  On this beach there’s lots of “pluff mud” in addition to sand and beds of oyster shells and numerous weathered and unique pieces of driftwood.  To me, this beach is more interesting because of the numerous things to inspect and photograph. 

My friend has dubbed this beach “Boneyard Beach” because of the artifacts she has found there on her many beach combing trips, and I’ve taken to calling this beach this name, too.  She’s come home with teeth and bones from various animals and aquatic wildlife who had once lived there.  I don’t have an eye for finding these, but she seems to spot them in among the shell beds and sand like they are a shiny needle in a haystack!   

On this day, I can’t remember if we found any artifacts.  I arrived at the beach reeling from the news of the earthquake – and lack of sleep from having watched too much of the news about it in the middle of the night just after it happened.  I almost didn’t want to go, but am glad I did.  I said this before, but it’s worth saying again:  I saw the water … and it was sobering to realize that this same calm water could cause such death and destruction – if given the right conditions. 

So – my friend and I went about our usual walking the beach with our cameras – enjoying the gorgeous, clear weather, the calm water, the beach, the driftwood, and shells – and, at least for me – appreciating it more than usual.

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1.  View of the beach showing pluff mud, beach grass, shells and sand – and on the edge of a little stream of water that flows from inland to the beach. 

2.  pluff mud at the shore line – the tide was high but receding

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1.  Great egret along the shorline and beach grass

2.  I believe this is a loon in winter plumage.  Loons breed on fresh water northern lakes, but they migrate to the coast – sometimes further south – to sheltered salt water bodies during the winter, and this loon is still in his winter home.  I’m not sure they go until April or even early May.  However, I also believe that it’s injured.  I was astounded at how close he allowed me to get to him.  As I got closer to him, he did move – but kind of limped toward the water.  I do know, however, that loons are very awkward on land.  Except to nest, they spend almost no time on land, so this may be it, too.  He did manage to waddle back to the water after being startled by my friend’s and my presence. 

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1.  An interesting close up of a piece of driftwood in the sand.  I see a head on this – and an eye, nose and even a mouth, too!

2.  More driftwood – along a stream that runs from inland to the beach whether the tide is in or out. 

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1.  Looking back to the stream of water that goes into the Sound.  If you look carefully, you can see a Great Blue Heron standing on those rocks.  The picture was taken into the sun, so there was a lack of contrast between the bird and the water.  Click on the picture to see it larger in my flickr account.

2.  The entrance / exit to the beach.  I took this as we were leaving.

From there we went over to Jarvis Park … next entry….!

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