Fat Sunset

Today we had one of those sunsets where the sun is just fat & bloated, looking more like a crimson full moon. I’ve noticed that when the sun sits fat like that on the horizon, and the sky is cloudless, it can do some wonderful things color wise on the water. This is a small lake near the Red River and the drought has revealed the forest of stumps underneath.

I almost had some cooler “drought” photographs but once again, the wild interrupted the photo op.  There is a small low area about a mile away that holds water. For years, I’ve never seen it without water so it surprised me to see it bone dry today. In fact, the drought revealed an old 4′ foot tall fence that it had covered up at some point in time. There was a little water in the middle area. I was setting up my tripod when I saw something writhe in the puddle area that remained.  A few more splashes followed and I realized it was several large catfish fighting until the bitter end. So I get my camera on the tripod and as I’m doing some metering through the view finder, I suddenly realize what the hell is maybe 10 yards in front of me—a 7-8 foot alligator laying in the few inches of water and muck that remained.

Click here for the ONLY photo I took of him after I stepped back a few yards. Although the soil was dried and heavily cracked, it was still soft and I was sinking. That’s when I decided to call it. I’m not skittish of alligators as they more often move away from you and aren’t overly aggressive. But a starving alligator and not good running ground isn’t a favorable recipe.

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4 thoughts on “Fat Sunset

  1. Yep, I’m thinking retreat was the right option. Do gators not go after people at all? They kind of sound like freshwater crocs in Australia – they’re pretty small (compared to salties) and generally run away from people. We were told by one ranger that an easy way to tell a freshie apart from a saltie is if the croc is chasing you – it’s probably a saltie!

    Great colours in this sunset shot.

    • No, they are smaller and less fierce but all will fight if you get too close usually. Attacks or deaths aren’t near as frequent as with salties. The biggest danger comes with females protecting a nest. They are not usually far away and will attack/chase every time.

      I should also add that this was more surprising as alligators in this area are rare. We are about 200 miles north of the major swamp/bayou areas.

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