Except for the open quarter mile below Conowingo, the great river is quiet. We had a cold, really windy December followed by a true January grip. No thaw this year. Yet our total snow cover is not impressive.
I took Snowbear and Kiwi to Peter’s Creek, up Route 222, smack in Amish nation. Watched a young mother walk twins in a carriage. It’s amazing to see how some families stay warm in these steep Piedmont walls of schist.
If you take Harmony Ridge Road and Slate Hill, you will eventually end in a hemlock ravine reminiscent of western Maine. Follow it to the confluence with the Susquehanna and the kingfishers will yak with arrogance at your interruption; as you watch Great Blue Heron squawk over rarely located open trickles, where the tributary meets its mother.
A giant ‘V’ of semi-nervous Canada geese veered downriver, aware of the approaching system. I watched fiercely from the car window for January raptors because they are so obvious in the stark landscape, but viewed not a one.
Then, driving back into the tree farm, I was greeted by a startled Cooper’s Hawk; used to the easy pickings in the Chance yard.