Bald Eagle soars over Donner Lake - Amtrak Reno Train
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Bald Eagle soars over Donner Lake - Amtrak Reno Train

As our Amtrak train from Reno passed over the last part of Donner Lake and I pressed the shutter, I thought to myself, that's a Bald Eagle flying over the lake. Turns out it was a bald eagle, and I captured it above the blue gray lake water so the eagle can be clearly seen.

Now that I had seen the image, and it certainly looked like a bald eagle, I did want to Google if there really are bald eagles flying around California in the middle of winter. Jackpot on the first result. "Bald eagles in winter may be found throughout most of California at lakes..." - 

The last time I rode a train was about 8 years ago in Alaska while doing the land cruising portion of a Alaska land and see cruise. Before that, it may have been 30 years since the last train ride ( If you don't count BART as a real train ).

This train trip was from the San Francisco Bay Area to Reno Nevada. It was planned in February as it was thought there would be a lot of snow to pass through at the higher elevations and over Donner Pass. After record snow fall last year to end California's 5 year drought, the state went right back to drought rain and snowfall amounts for the 2017 - 2018 season.

The trip up to Reno was enjoyable as the Amtrak train is offers plenty of legroom in the coach seats and the ability to visit the observation car which offers somewhat better views. What there wasn't, was a lot of snow till the very highest elevations the train travels. Fortunately there was a good dusting of snow the last day full day we were in Reno, which normally means much more snow at the higher elevations such as Donner lake which sits at 5935 feet above sea level. The fresh snow, and our early morning departure offered up wonderful views of the freshly snow covered Truckee river and the Sierra Nevada mountains.

Location: Donner Lake Truckee, CA 96161.

1/640; f/6.3; ISO 400; 40.0 mm.