A Long Farewell to Winter

It got up to 27C (80F) today, almost a record high. Looks like we’ve skipped spring and bounced right to summer.

In a previous post, I mentioned I missed snow for some reasons. Seeing the remnants of winter fade away gave me a sense of loss. Many of you responded with disbelief. Why would I miss snow? I couldn’t say why either. But just two days ago, I went birding at our local lake (reservoir) and saw these sights. Again, my sentiment was confirmed.

Ice melting in the water. Birds congregated. Open nature welcoming a change in the season, or, was it lingering a bit more in the passing moment? Part of this photo has now become my new Header picture on Ripple Effects:

Melting Ice on Glenmore Reservoir

Seems like these Mallards wanted to hang out a bit longer among the shimmering ice. When the ice all disappear, the water will lose a bit of glitz and glamour:

Shimmering ice

The distant Rocky Mountains are evidence of the glory of snow… a beauty that is appreciated more from afar.

The Snowy Rockies

However, what made my day was another first. Since I started birding last September, there had been many ‘firsts’.  Yes, the Pheasant was a pleasant surprise for a life-long city dweller, but it was seeing my first Loon up close that made it personal for me:


And hearing its call… simply mesmerizing. Couldn’t capture it here in the photo, except the serene, solitary existence:

Loon 1

Loon 3

With the sighting of the first Loon in spring water, I’ll say farewell to snow and ice, willingly. If I want to see snow, I know where to go… my photo files.


All photos taken by Arti of Ripple Effects, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, 2013. Do not copy or reblog without permission.


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If she’s not birding by the Pond, Arti’s likely watching a movie, reading, or writing a review. Creator of Ripple Effects, bylines in Asian American Press, Vague Visages, Curator Magazine.

25 thoughts on “A Long Farewell to Winter”

  1. Hmmm. I wonder if your summer preview coincided with ours. We bounced into the 90s for a few days before quickly cooling down for a couple days of rain. Very strange for our spring.

    Love that last shot of the loon, looking back, moving forward.


    1. nikkipolani,

      I heard on the radio that we’ll get back to more seasonal weather, cooler. But my iPhone temps. app says it’ll be warm and hot in the next little while. Don’t know who to trust. But then again, nobody can guarantee when it comes to the weather, right?


  2. We’ve yet to get a blast of significant heat here in the Big Apple, but usually once it arrives, it’s like a ten week-long sweat lodge. I love those shots of the loon just gliding on the water. Wish I could trade places with that varmint.


    1. LA,

      Now is unseasonably hot… will be in the upper 70F throughout the week. But just yesterday, while driving in stop-and-go rush hour traffic, probably 90F in my car, I wished it would snow.


  3. I’m one of those folks that doesn’t miss the snow. Right now I’m enjoying the sights and sounds of what is passing for spring in the Midwest. Cold one day, hot the next, then cold again. But the birds don’t seem to care. Each day is bringing a new wave of migrants and I have to enjoy them while I can. The Loon is a beauty, a bird I don’t see very often.


    1. Leslie,

      This is one reason I love the birds… they’re so resilient, adapt and enjoy themselves come what may. The ice on the lake didn’t bother them a bit. BTW, other than the few Loons I saw (I was with birding group), through the lens of my leader’s high powered binoculars, set up on the tripod for us, hordes of Western Grebes and some Coots. The Grebes were like Swans, swimming gracefully in the icy water. They were in the first photo but indistinct at the far end.


  4. Every now and then we’ll get a loon here in the wintertime, along with the coots. Even typing that, I just realized our coots are gone! I saw some gathering about two weeks ago – I suspect it’s no mistake that their sudden disappearance coincides with a lessening of the strong north winds.

    One of my birding hopes is to someday see a loon with its babies on its back. A friend from Minnesota says they see it all the time up there – I think it’s the sweetest thing in the world. I have seen alligators on their mother’s back, but that doesn’t reach quite the same level of cute!


    1. Linda,

      That day when we saw the Loon, there were hordes of Western Grebes and Coots in the far end of the reservoir (yes, that’s our reservoir, where we get our drinking water, right in my neck of the woods). Without following a birding group, with a knowledgeable leader (looks like he’s in his 70’s), I wouldn’t have seen and learned and appreciated so much.


  5. The banner photo is gorgeous and very ‘you’ somehow! We have finally had a few lovely summery days too, though it’s overcast again now. I like snow in pictures, and there are times when the idea of it appeals, but late spring is really my time of year – I love it now, with the long evenings and the soft warm days.


    1. litlove,

      Now I’m all curious… just wonder what’s ‘me’ in others’ eyes. Yes, I consider myself blessed living at the foothills of the Rockies, with clear blue skies most of the day (even in -20C. weather), and crisp, clean air, most of the time. 😉


  6. Aren’t loons great? The color and patterning is gorgeous. And listening to them even more amazing. One summer morning a few years ago we got up on a weekend, and were sitting at breakfast listening to the birds outside when all of a sudden we hear a loon call. I looked at my husband and said, was that a loon? And then we heard it again. Yup. We went outside to look for the bird and discovered our neighbor sitting on his patio listening to a tape of loon calls! We all had a pretty good laugh over it.


    1. Stefanie,

      LOL! That’s a good story! And so real too. You see, I just heard the Loon call once that day and was already captivated by it. So after I went home I Googled for the Loon’s calls and listened to them. No wonder they have bird calls on CD’s etc. They’re so relaxing, and meditative too.


  7. Love that loon! Your photos are gorgeous, as always, Arti. If it is any consolation, it was about 80 degrees F here yesterday, and looks to be heading that way again today. Spring is far too fleeting…


    1. ds,

      Think I’ll go back and visit them again, hopefully found them in the same water. There were a few, but so far away. When I said close, I meant through my tele lens. 😉


  8. Yes, when you have countryside like that, I can understand missing the snow. It certainly is beautiful and I really love the new banner — good choice! Oh, your birds are glorious and I’m so glad that you have found this as a new passion. We don’t see many loons at our lake — I’m told they are there, but I mainly see gulls, ducks, geese and some shore birds, the occasional heron. I love their sound.


    1. Jeanie,

      Oh it’s not ‘countryside’ for me, that’s Glenmore Reservoir where we get our drinking water. And it’s a huge lake, very beautiful. All the photos above were taken there on that day. The distant Rockies? I can almost view them from my home… if not for the houses across the street. Anyway, you’re right too… a bit of country in town. That’s what we urbanites need. 😉


  9. So lovely.

    The weather in Southern California has been very odd. Ninety degrees last week and rain and cold this week. We hardly know how to dress anymore and the animals and plants are so confused.


  10. The haunting call of the loon is one of the things I miss most about Muskoka, but a trip to the lake (reservoir) here, I am greeted with great blue herons, pelicans and various other cranes, along with the usual suspects – Canada Geese!


    1. Michelle,

      Quite a contrast isn’t it bet. Muskoka and where you’re now in OK. But what a paradise of birds you’re seeing now that we can’t see so readily. I guess by now you’re all settled and enjoying nature in your neck of the woods. Thanks for visiting. I’ve always appreciated you taking the time to comment. Sorry it has taken me so long to reply but with post leading to post, I sometimes forget what I’ve left off undone in the comment section of previous posts. 😉


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