Photo Destination: the Eagles of Conowingo Dam
The Conowingo Hydroelectric Station on the Susquehanna River is the site of a hydroelectric generation plant that has areas open to the public. As a result of the dam stunning fish as it operates, migrating bald eagles congregate here for an easy meal. They're often found numbering several dozen to even a hundred or more! You can sometimes have eagles as little as 50 feet from you and they fish from early morning well into the afternoon.
All photos in this article courtesy of Dan's staff member Steve M.
Considerations for getting there
The dam is located at the mouth of the Susquehanna River on the Chesapeake Bay, about 5 miles south of the Pennsylvania border (see Google Maps for details). You'll get the best photos if you arrive within the first hour or two of daylight. The best times to go are October to February, although most years largest numbers of eagles are usually present in November or December. Call ahead for the generation schedule at the dam, as the eagles are most active on those days: 1 (888) 457-4076.
Gear to bring
You're going to want either a super-zoom compact camera like the Nikon P900, or a DSLR with a good long telephoto lens, around 500mm is ideal. And if you don't have a lens like that, we've got you covered. Take a look at our rental department for choices like the Nikon 200-500mm or Tamron 150-600mm, or our Canon 500 f4 + 1.4 TC and 7D MK II with wimberley tripod setup. Any of our staff will be happy to help you choose the right gear for your outing.
And don't forget to bring spare batteries and lots of memory cards. It's very easy to fire off hundreds of frames while you're trying to catch the action just right. Those memory cards can fill up fast!
If you take the trip, we'd love to see your photos. Share them on our Facebook page or tag us on Instagram. Have fun!
Join us at Conowingo Dam, November 2019
We've organized a bus trip to photograph the eagles. Come join us!
— Steve M. is a photo equipment specialist at Dan's and an avid photographer. He's got a particular skill for wildlife and landscape photography, and also enjoys riding across those landscapes on his mountain bike.
If you take the trip, don't forget to share your photos with us on Facebook or Instagram! We'd love to see what you get.