January 13th, 2013. Second consecutive day with high temps some 25 degrees F above normal. The seeds of autumn not yet fully dispersed, but mid-winter in the Carolinas today feels like late spring.
The river beckons. Eno River, just minutes from Interstate 85 in Durham County. The cool water looks inviting on an unseasonably warm winter afternoon.
Watching the fish feast on an early hatch of tiny flying insects, Jay spies another early emerger...
An ectothermic reptile such as this little brown snake is rarely seen abroad in mid-winter.
Although not aquatic, this fellow doesn't hesitate to take to the currents for safety.
Returning to the warm rocks in a safer spot...
A glance upstream reveals more reptiles basking in the premature spring.
Though there seems to be plenty of room, these turtles appear to fancy the same spot of sun.
This little slider appears frozen in motion alongside the gently flowing waters. In reality, all limbs are fully extended to maximize his exposure to the sun's warm rays. The hitch-hiking snail's just along for the ride.
This large garter snake seems completely oblivious to the camera; the sun is a powerful elixir.
Over the swaying bridge and homeward bound, the visitors leave the river dwellers to revel in a few more hours of Spring.
And somewhere below, the seeds are a few hours closer to unfurling this year's vine...