Eagles, osprey, hawks, wild turkeys, water foul, canadian geese, snow geese, deer, rabbits, dinosaur tracks, and a very friendly park ranger greeted us at Clayton Lake State Park in Clayton, New Mexico.
We are declaring this beautiful park a rare Streamin’ in Shiny Gem!
Clayton Lake serves as a wintering area for waterfowl. The lake also contains rainbow trout, walleye, channel catfish, and bass. All these food sources draw birds of prey. Everyday Sue and I would sit in our chairs behind Shiny, which overlooked the lake, and watch eagles soar above their hunting grounds and osprey dive bomb the waters of the lake.
Canadian geese landed on the lake for the night and rose all together in the morning with cacophony of sound. Rabbits ran from hiding place to hiding place, never staying in the open for more than a second or two.
Deer foraged throughout the campground as if they owned the place. Maybe they do.
Television is no match for the show we witnessed here. By the way, we don’t watch TV. Shiny came with two televisions. One we removed and then installed a folding wall table for Sue to write/paint on every morning. The remaining TV we use as a digital towel rack.
Sue took a water color course this summer from Tuftonboro, NH resident, Jan Croteau and since then has been painting with water colors every morning often drawing inspiration from photos she has taken. We both agree it’s not fine art but she has fun doing it!
Clayton lake was formed in the 1970’s after an earth dam was constructed across Seneca Creek. The excavation for the dam plus a 1982 flood that washed away a layer of silt uncovered a treasure trove of dinosaur tracks.
Dinosaurs walked erect and generally did not drag their tails. Here at the Clayton lake site it is surmised that one slipped and lowered it’s tail to keep its balance. So there is also a rare tail imprint here. Unfortunately the pictures I took of the tail tracks did not come out well.
The mud cracks here at Clayton lake formed 100 million years ago as the ancient ocean, that existed then, dried up. I love this stuff!
Sue has an extraordinary eye for capturing the elegance of the moment. She sees beauty in the simplest everyday scenes that I just don’t comprehend until they are pointed out to me.
If you are in the area pay this extraordinary state park a visit!