Honestly, one of the reasons I so wanted to move to the Adirondacks was for the opportunity to photograph loons, not JUST to photograph them, but to tell their story with photographs and words. My goal, as with most stories, is intimately get to know my subjects and to capture those special moments that bring their personalities out. With the loons I wanted to share their family upbringing from courtship to nest building, to incubating eggs... and then of course, to photograph the chicks and family life from hatching until they depart in the Fall.
I missed out on the courtship part due to not having a boat to be out on the water, but I recently purchased my freedom to the pond, a super lightweight solo canoe with the seat on the bottom just like a kayak, that enables me access to wherever they are. I was a little trepidatious at first taking my somewhat heavy (uninsured!) Nikon D850 with my 600mm lens and 1.4 TC gear on the canoe but quickly found a method that works well and is fairly stable. I shoot handholding with my elbow on my knee for support.
My first day out on the pond I eagerly searched for the nest, paddling along the shore almost back to my starting point, I was beginning to give up hope in finding it. As I rounded the last corner there was this little island close to shore with the loon on its nest. Taking a few quick photographs, I quickly moved on not wanting to disturb the loon.
The sun was just about to set as I eased my canoe back to shore, my heart grateful that my dream of a loon family to document was coming true.
Copyright Pamela Underhill Karaz