I recently made a photography excursion to Caddo Lake, which lies on the Texas and Louisiana border. One early morning before sunrise, along with a few friends, we made our way to a boat dock in total darkness. We were headed out into the bayou with cameras in hand.
Floating along on a pontoon boat down one of the dark moss-covered corridors of a bayou, we came upon this Great Egret who appeared to be waiting for his breakfast to emerge from the dark, murky waters. As we slowly floated closer, he just sat as if he was waiting for me to make his portrait.
As soon as I captured this image, he took off. Thank you, I thought to myself. As we moved along the bayou's beautiful, almost alien-like landscape, we saw several kingfishers, woodpeckers, blue herons, an owl or two, and other egrets fishing for their first meal of the day.
It is an amazing location for landscape photography and wild birds. From the shore, the Cypress trees offered interesting patterns and designs. From a pontoon in the water, you can see the uniquely wide base of the trees and moss that heavily drapes the branches, making up the delicate yet beautiful scenery.
We discovered that almost any time of day was a treat to float around the lake. Sunrise offered golden backlighting through the moss-covered cypress trees. At the same time, an afternoon-to-sunset cruise revealed beautiful copper skies and delicate shadows where an owl was often seen keeping an eye out on our excursion.
Midday journeys were delightful and expansive. Birds flew everywhere while fish jumped from the dark, often very shallow waters beneath the boat. Several man-made duck blinds revealed themselves as we floated down each finger of the lake. With ducks aplenty, hunting season is a big deal for the local folks on Caddo Lake.
Almost every point of view of Caddo Lake offers a picturesque scene. I spent four days there and could have easily found ten more days of images to capture – an amazing location. We stayed near Uncertain, Texas, in a B&B called The Spatterdock Guest House. I highly recommend this beautifully quiet slice of life.
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Dimitri Vasileiou • Editor