Snyders’ Lake is all thawed out, so the birds have spread out and are a bit harder to see. I grew up spoiled for waterfront access. The law is all beaches, posted or fenced or whatever, are public access below the mean high water mark — and all of us kids knew it. Up here most of the lakes are surrounded by what used to be cabins and are now year-round houses, so it’s really difficult to find a spot to set up a scope without some (justifiably) paranoid homeowner thinking you’re checking out a location for a teenage beer blast. Fortunately, I’m middle-aged and enthusiastically innocuous enough that I can sometimes get people to calm down and watch what I’m seeing.
What I was seeing as I cruised slowly down the road brought me to a stop ASAP. A large dark bird, low in the water — yes! A Common Loon in full breeding plumage! And… what was that, that just dove? Another? And a third at the far end of the lake! And just possible several more, but by then the sun was full in my face and I was trying to scope through my windshield while not quite parking in a stranger’s driveway.
Wow. I’ve never seen more than one Loon at a time, and most often I saw them in the bay in winter plumage. You can’t beat a spiffy outfit like this!