Monday, September 24, 2012

Geezer V, Driggs, Idaho - Day 4

When we got up this morning John and Greg were gone; they had left at 5:30 while the rest of us were still sound asleep.  The house seemed very quiet in the morning as our group was now down to four.  Steph and Val worked on some genealogy things online while Jack and I tried our luck at putting together a jigsaw puzzle (not much luck, we spent  most of our time looking for missing pieces).  It was a very quiet morning.  After lunch, Val and I went into Driggs for a presentation on the Sandhill Crane and Jack and Steph were going to try their luck at fly fishing again in the Teton River.

The Teton Valley is an important staging area for the Sandhill Crane migration.  There are abundant wetlands for them to roost in and large areas of cut barley and wheat fields for them to fatten up for there trek south.  They are large birds, about 37 to 45 inches long with a wingspan of 75 to 80 inches.  The program was put on by the Teton Regional Land Trust and consisted of a photo workshop by wildlife photographer Tim Mayo, an informational talk on the Sandhill Cranes by biologist and Teton Regional Land Trust Stewardship Director Matt Lucia, and a trip to observe the Sandhills Cranes.  Both talks were interesting and informative.  After the talks, we headed out to an area of cut grain fields near a wetland area where the cranes were roosting.  When we arrived, we could see many cranes feeding and hear their distinctive and loud calls to each other.  Here are some photos of the Sandhill Cranes taken through a long telephoto lens as we obviously couldn't get very close.

We waited and waited for them to fly off to their night roost, but they seemed content to continue feeding so we headed for home.  Here are a couple more pictures from the area where we were observing the cranes.

It was a very interesting evening and we were very impressed by the Teton Regional Land Trust.

When we got back to the River Rim House, we had more exciting news from Jack and Steph; the fish were biting!  Actually they were biting for Steph, but not so much for Jack.  They found a spot near the house where they could drive down to the river and it turned out to be a good spot.  Here are a few pictures of Steph and some of the fish she caught.

Just a little one, but bigger fish were coming.
One in the net.
Steph with her best fish.
Despite the successful outing, there would be no trout for dinner for us as they were doing catch and release.  Well done Steph, I was impressed.

After dinner it was back to the hot tub to wind down the day, tomorrow is our last day.

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