This meetup with take us to the Conawingo Dam on the Sesquehanna River in Maryland, north of Baltimore. Every day, the dam generates power for the grid. When they start generating, a warning bell is used to let people know that they will open the flood gates. The eagles hear this and come to the dam to feed on the diced up fish after they pass through the turbines.
Eagles soar overhead, land in the surrounding trees and electrical tower. They fight with each other over the catches they make (there is no honor among thieves!). Since there is a lot of food in the water, there are plenty of eagles, vultures, gulls, egrets, heron and comerants around to clean up.
At this time of the morning, you are on the side of the river. The mornings are typically breezy, very cold and frosty. You must be prepared for the cold. gloves, scarves, parkas, hats, hand/foot warmers, etc are all recommended. I have seen some people bring door mats and cardboard to stand on to keep their feet from getting cold. A thermos with hot drinks would be a grand idea. Snacks for the ride and during the shoot are recommended. Long lenses, memory cards, extra batteries and tripods are recommended! If you do not own them, consider a weekend rental (you are welcomed to return on your own the following day to maximize the rental expense).
It is about a 1 1/2 hour drive. We will carpool from the Herndon Monroe Park and Ride. The meetup time will help us to avoid some of the morning traffic and get there before the start of the generating cycle. If you are willing to drive, we will consolidate participants before we leave. Arrive about 15 minutes early if you can so we can put this together. Riders are expected to contribute to gas and tolls to help the drivers.
For those members in Maryland, feel free to meet us at Conawingo Dam! From Route 1 north turn right on Shuresville Road and left on Shures Landing Road to get to the observation deck BELOW the dam. Please let me know if you are driving separately. Be sure to check in with me when you get to the dam! Look for a lot of people with big lenses!
Google Map: https://maps.google.com/maps?q=Conowingo+Dam,+8,+Oakwood,+Cecil,+Maryland+21918&hl=en&ll=39.652954,-76.173921&spn=0.01999,0.049567&sll=38.955582,-77.349061&sspn=0.161522,0.396538&t=h&geocode=Fa4wXQIdJbF1-w&hnear=Conowingo+Dam&z=15
Return time will be betweem 10:00 - 11:00 AM, typically this is when when they stop generating in the morning. The bald eagles and other birds find roosts to sleep off their food. We can discuss having lunch together so we can warm up and share our experience.