This afternoon, my wife and I, and another couple took a kayak trip down the Quinebaug River, from Putnam just below the dam to the bridge at RT. 101 on the Brooklyn/Killingly town line. We had a vehicle at each end so it was a one-way trip downstream. It measures on Google Earth to be 6.3 miles. A couple of miles along the way, we stopped at a bend in the river with a nice shallow gravel area to have a snack and a swim. The water was quite nice and the air temperature was in the mid 80's.
The best part, I think, was sighting a mature male bald eagle several times. For the first sighting, he was perched on a tree branch over the river, and none of us saw him, until he flew down the river ahead of us. Then, each time, even though he was high in a tree, as we got parallel to him he would fly on ahead and land in another treetop. It was almost as if he was leading the way down the river. What a gorgeous and majestic creature. My wife and I have seen eagles on the Quinebaug before, but usually soaring at high altitude. This guy was just over 100 feet above us, so as up close and personal as any of us have ever been.