Except for this little group of Mallard hens paddling quietly amid the shimmering reflections.
The riverbanks were adorned with stunning juxtapositions of Cardinal Flower and Helenium.
Even underwater, the plants put on a beautiful display.
The angle of the sun was just right to set this patch of Cardinal Flower ablaze.
Against the dark shadows of the deep woods, these sprays of Goldenrod exploded like fireworks.
Tall Coneflower lifted its bright-yellow blossoms high above the other riverbank plants.
I was surprised to find these Elderberries still hanging in heavy clusters from their shrubs, uneaten as yet by the birds. Perhaps they need a frost to temper their bitterness and make them more palatable -- athough I think they will fall off long before frost, since a shower of berries fell into my boat as I paddled beneath the boughs.
I was happy to find these snow-white berries, too, still clinging to their hot-pink pedicels. I doubt they will stay there long, since Panicled Dogwood berries are an important food source for birds.
Ah, here they are, the flowers I was hoping to find! Is there any blue more lovely than that of the Closed Gentian? Especially when set off by a flower of complementary color, such as Helenium?
I found several clusters of gentians growing on the banks of a little island in the middle of the river.
This little clam shell seemed to glow in the dark waters next to the riverbank.
Somebody once told me that the fruits of Purple-flowering Raspberry were seedy and sour. I think that person wanted to hoard them all to herself, because they really are tender and tasty, sweet and soft if you let them get perfectly ripe, which these were today. I was grateful for their little gift of deliciousness.
Ah yes, the fall will soon be upon us, with September only a week and a day away. But Black Tupelo doesn't wait until autumn to put on its dazzling display of ruby leaves. Also, the trees that I passed by today always turn exceptionally early, since their trunks have all been girdled by beavers. It amazes me that these trees still stand, still leaf out each summer, and even bear fruit.