Posts Tagged ‘Golden Eagle’

My wife, young daughter, and I just got back from a road trip up to Seattle, WA with a stop in Ashland, OR on the way back. As we drove and drove, we had the good fortune to see eagles on a number of occasions and they were especially spectacular in the behaviors we got to witness.

Our first eagle encounter was just as we drove past Ashland, OR on our way north. My wife spotted two birds that seemed to be struggling, mid-air. They were two Golden Eagles, and as we watched they opened their wings and began to spiral downwards, feet locked together in a talon grapple! The drop was spectacular as they spun around each other and plummeted towards the earth. As we drove closer, they came to the end of the fall and let go of each other. Both huge, adult birds then flew right over our car.

After our visit in Seattle, we decided to hit the road quite early. This meant that I was driving south on I-5 as dawn was spreading her rose-red fingers across the sky. As the day brightened in central western Washington, I got to watch several Bald Eagles fishing in the various waterways we passed over. It was a truly beautiful sight with the morning light just touching the tree tops and these large, dark birds circling over the sky-reflecting water and dropping low to strafe the surface for fish.

Our final eagle encounter was back in the Ashland area. We took a side trip out to the little town of Jacksonville and on our way back stopped at a gas station. As we waited by the pump, a Golden Eagle started circling overhead. It was a very nice look, as the bird was not too high and there were no trees blocking our view. The sight got even better when the eagle climbed in altitude and then began a series of dramatic pendulum flights! Pendulum flights are where the bird flies in a number of roller-coaster-like arching dives, one right after another. At the top of each arch, the eagle would close its wings and dive, picking up speed. At the bottom of the dive, it opened its wings and used its momentum to coast up to the top of the next dive. A wonderful show, indeed!

So, for eagle watching, I would highly recommend the I-5 corridor! We certainly had a great trip!

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