The July 4th long weekend was fun, and included the normal “Up North” cabin activities including sunrise kayak paddles. Most of the week saw cloudy skies due to all the forest fire smoke blowing south via the jetstream from all the fires in northern Saskatchewan. Fortunately one morning saw clear skies, and I immediately took the kayak out at sunrise. I have found that birding and kayaking is a good combination. One may quiety approach “birdy” areas, using lots of slow gliding. This method allowed me to get c!ose to both a common loon which was making its desires known to another loon (i.e. move away from my turf), and a great blue heron fishing for breakfast.