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Tag Archives: Mississippi River

After leaving the Nelson’s on the Rush River we drove down to Red Wing Minnesota looking for Eagles. When we arrived at Colvill Park there were already quite a few eagle watchers and photographers gathered along the shore. It was bitterly cold at -15 but fortunately there was almost no wind. As we pulled into the parking lot we could see over a hundred Eagles sitting in the trees and fishing in the open water. I’ve been to Colvill Park a number of times but have never seen anywhere near this many eagles at one place. More Bald Eagle photos from Colvill Park can be found on my website.

This eagle was sitting in a frost covered tree. He had apparently had success at fishing because his tail was covered in blood.

We could see fish along the surface of the water and so could the eagles. They seem to have over a 50 percent success rate on this cold morning.

It was really fun watching them fly above the water looking for fish.


As we watched this eagle flew up into a tree near the car and was telling everyone that he caught a fish.

Generally we visit Perrot State Park in the Spring and in the fall but we had some time and the need to finish a book we were listening to on the car CD so we drove down to  Perrot State Park for a hike to the overlook of the Mississippi River.





There were a lot of dragonflies around. I had my macro lens on the camera so it was a challenge to get close enough to them to get a photograph.

Common Whitetail

Common Pondhawk

There were also some butterflies around but I didn’t have much luck photographing them.

Aphrodite Fritillary

There were also a variety of wildflowers blooming.

Goat’s Beard

Butterfly Weed

Last week we headed out on another trip to find Bald Eagles along the Mississippi River. Just before we reached Durand, Wisconsin I noticed one sitting in a tree along the road. We turned around and went back for some shots. This is probably the best Bald Eagle shot I’ve gotten. He was right near the road and was not obstructed by any branches.



As we drove over the Bridge At Wabasha  we noticed an eagle sitting in a tree next to a nest just north of the bridge. Unfortunately it was too far away for a shot. We then headed up to Reads Landing. There were a few Eagles sitting on the sand on the other side of the river but too far away for any shots. We did see a pair of Mature eagles flying around. It looked like they might be getting ready to mate. About that time a train came along and I could see that the eagles had gotten close enough to photograph but by the time the train passed they were gone. We had lunch at the Reads Landing Brewing Company. Apparently it is in the process of changing hands.

We then drove north toward Red Wing, Minnesota. There are several pull offs just north of Reads Landing so we stopped to watch the eagles fishing on the open water. One of them caught a large fish before it flew off to have lunch.



We then drove to the next turn off where another photographer was already photographing eagles. He hadn’t had much luck but just then one landed a short distance away. Unfortunately it was partially hidden by the trees.


While we were looking at the eagle another bird flew into a patch of Sumac. Turned out to be a Piliated Woodpecker.


A little further up the road we found a bunch of Mallard Ducks on a partially frozen pond.


When we reached Red Wing there were no birds around so we headed home.


This past weekend the temperature was in the 60’s so we started to get an itch to go hiking. Unfortunately the trails around home were either closed or very wet. We decided to drive down to Perot State Park in Trempealeau, Wisconsin. Perot is a little further south and they have a number of great trails that are largely south facing. It was a great day of hiking and allowed us to get some much needed exercise.

What was really made the day was the number of eagles we saw on the trip as we drove along the Mississippi River. We saw a few on the drive over to Nelson but between Nelson, Wisconsin and Trempealeau, Wisconsin we saw well in excess of 50 eagles. It was the most eagles we have ever seen in a single day.


With the leaves still off of the trees it was easy to spot eagle nests. In most cases there were eagle sitting in the tree besides the nest.


My wife and I headed out last week to search for Bald Eagles along the Mississippi River. Our first stop was Alma below Lock and Dam number four. Not an eagle to be seen. Our next stop was Reads Landing. We saw only two eagles and didn’t bother to get the camera out.Bald-Eagle-14-2-_1043

We then headed up to Red Wing and Colvill Park. As soon as we pulled into the park we saw an immature Bald Eagle sitting in a tree next to the parking lot. Someone was taking it’s photo. I was able to get some photos of it then went looking for other shots.Bald-Eagle-14-2-_1001

There were about two dozen eagles in the area. A few of them were successful in catching fish but as soon as they landed they attracted other eagles that started battling for the fish. In several cases they lost the fish.Bald-Eagle-14-2-_1057

The immature Bald Eagle returned to a tree near the parking lot so I managed some more photos of it. In talking with another photographer she said that earlier in the morning it had landed on one of the docks and she was able to walk up to within four feet of it.Bald-Eagle-14-2-_1027

Most of my photos were of immature Bald Eagles because those were the ones hanging around the parking area on this particular day.Bald-Eagle-14-2-_1050

They should be around until the end of February when they will disperse to their summer grounds.Bald-Eagle-14-2-_1046

More Bald Eagle photos can be found on my website.


My wife and I have been out looking for Bald Eagles on the Mississippi River this Winter. With the cold weather most of the river in our area is frozen over. The eagles have been forced to congregate in areas of open water. Bald-Eagle-14-1-_0632

We have developed a little road trip that takes most of a day. We start out by driving from Menomonie, Wisconsin to Durand, Wisconsin. In Durand we stop at the River Valley Bakery to pick up some artisan bread and pastries. Unfortunately they are closed until the 13th of February. We can’t wait until they open again. When they do open they have limited hours so call ahead.Bald-Eagle-14-1-_0637

Our next stop is Alma, Wisconsin where the eagles gather just below Lock and Dam number 4. The Mississippi River is almost completely frozen in the area so the only open water is found just below the dam. There is an outdoor viewing platform at the lock and dam and Wings over Alma also offers a free viewing deck. The times we have been there we have seen a dozen to over thirty Bald Eagles.Bald-Eagle-14-1-_0632

We then head down to Reads Landing, Minnesota for lunch at the Reads Landing Brewing Company. They have limited winter hours so check their website. At Reeds landing there are usually a large number of Bald Eagles searching for food in the open water. The great thing is that you can have lunch at the brewery and watch the eagles at the same time.Bald-Eagle-14-1-_0634

If you haven’t been to the National Eagle Center in Wabasha, Minnesota you should stop in. They have five captive eagles that are on display and they do daily presentations. Generally you can see wild eagles from the Center. They also have an eagle count on their home page so it is a good way to see where the eagles are gathering. When we stop in Wabasha we try to visit the Olde Triangle Pub for some fine Irish stew. No the eagle is not dining at the Olde Triangle Pub.

Rabbit for Lunch

Rabbit for Lunch

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