Zack and I wanted to check out the Purgatory Creek Confluence section of the river in our new wetsuits because our last attempt was cut a little short when we got cold. We knew there was a lot of fishing line and hooks in the river so Zack came prepared with his new knife and trash bag. There is a short section between the first railroad track and the confluence that I always assumed was too shallow to swim but we started there anyways and it ended up being easy to pass. The river splits around an island at the Purgatory Creek confluence and where it merges back together I found what looks like an old river/channel bank by looking at the ledge and old tree stumps. Historical records suggest the left channel around the island is the original river channel and the right channel was a sluice/race for a dam at the confluence, but overtime the river favored the right channel. Sort of like a man-made meander/oxbow.
Backwater in the confluence and an eddy below a downed treat create calm, motionless, scenes. I spotted this small Texas river cooter floating in the coon-tail/cabomba stand and it let me film within inches.
Winter sunlight breaks through the riparian forest and penetrates the water column creating beautiful moments.
Water stargrass is one of the less abundant native species that I enjoy observing. It can create large bush-like colonies. I also found the head of a catfish in an area where the river otters were reported from this summer. I wonder if it's possible this was one of their prey. This is the first sign of catfish I've seen above Rio Vista dam.