Salt Pond A23 on the Winter Solstice


As I finished up a meeting with Wayne and Jennifer at the Alviso Environmental Education Center (EEC) there were a couple of hours of daylight left in the short December afternoon. There were so many birds rafting around the EEC that I decided not to fly a kite there. Instead, I headed up to to Salt Pond A23 just north of Drawbridge. My last visit there in September found the pond essentially dry and sporting an interesting palette of colors and textures. I was curious about how it looked now that our winter rains have arrived.

Salt Pond A23 at sunset

The sun sure disappears fast this time of the year.

It was an interesting KAP session. The winds were low (measured at 3.5 – 4.5 mph at the ground using a Kestrel anemometer) and the water surface was still. For some reason I thought the winds might fill in a bit and launched my 7.5-foot Rokkaku. This newly-sewn kite was able to lift the dSLR rig but only by a small margin. I spent the next hour or so as the sun set walking up and down the levee with my gear just barely floating above the 25% saline water.  While slight the winds were smooth and it all worked out just fine.

This was my first flight using an airborne GPS system to log coordinates that were later used to geotag the photographs. The map position for each image on Flickr was thus produced by an automated workflow. Neat.

And speaking of Flickr, here is a gallery of images from the session posted there:

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