Conowing Dam Maryland Photography five eagles flying with one holding a fish and the others chasing the food.

Conowingo Dam Photography Location

PHOTO TOURS

Photography Magazine Extra and Extra Eyes Photo Tours annually visit Conowingo Dam in Maryland. This is what we refer to as “Nature at its best.” The Conowingo Dam is one of the largest hydroelectric dams. This dam generates electricity for the Baltimore area. It is a weekend photography tour, Friday through Sunday.

THE EAGLES AT CONOWINGO DAM

The eagle population at this location peaks between November and December. Well over 100 Bald Eagles gather at Conowingo Dam, along the lower Susquehanna River in northern Maryland, to feast on fish every winter. When the sirens go off, the gates will open, and the fish are then sucked through the giant turbines, and it’s time for the feeding frenzy. You do not want to miss an opportunity to enjoy this incredible nature. Photographers come from all over to get their best eagle images. Extra Eyes Photo Tours has a great weekend tour during peak eagle time every November. Dress warm and buy hot pockets from the sporting goods store to put in your gloves and shoes.

On many occasions, you will hear photographers yell things such as “incoming” to let the other photographer know an eagle is about to approach — the eagle’s circle, looking down at the waters and potting their fish. When an eagle dives, they hang its claws down, swoops down, stretches its claws out, and grabs a fish. After this, the action starts. All other birds in the area will try to steal the fish from the eagle. Sometimes, you will see two birds attached to one fish and swinging around in a battle for the meal.

Click on the image and scroll to see the full-screen slideshow.

Where to photograph Eagles – Conowingo Dam Maryland

ABOUT THE DAM

As the winter chill sets in at the Susquehanna River in northern Maryland, the rush of water signals the start of the feeding frenzy as sirens blare and gates open, sending tons of fish through the powerful turbines of the dam. It’s a sight not to be missed for any nature enthusiast.

The air is filled with excitement and anticipation as photographers gather to capture their best shots of these magnificent birds. As you stand among fellow photographers, cameras ready, you’ll hear calls of “incoming” as an eagle swoops down towards the river. Circling above, they scan the waters below before diving down with outstretched claws to catch their prey. And once the first fish is seen, the real action begins.

Like a scene from a wild documentary, other birds in the area swoop in to try and steal the prized catch from the eagle’s grasp. Sometimes, two birds become entangled in a fierce battle over one fish, soaring above the river in a daring aerial display. It’s a thrilling sight that showcases these incredible creatures’ beauty and ferocity.

The majestic Conowingo Dam in Maryland stands tall and proud, a feat of human engineering nestled against the lush backdrop of nature. It is a spectacular photography location, especially in November when numerous eagles gather here. Skilled photographers worldwide flock to this spot, eagerly awaiting the perfect shot of these magnificent birds. As the sun sets, casting a golden glow over the Dam and its surroundings, the scene becomes breathtaking and worthy of capturing in film or pixels.

HOW TO GET TO CONOWIINGO DAM

To reach the Dam, a simple journey awaits. One can take the I-95 North toward the Delaware Memorial Bridge from the bustling city of New York. Cruise through the picturesque countryside, past the charming towns and verdant fields, and soon, you’ll find yourself at the entrance to the Dam. As you approach, the towering structure looms large against the horizon, its presence a testament to human ingenuity and the ability to harness nature’s power. The Dam stretches across the Susquehanna River.

THE BEST TIME TO GO TO SEE THE EAGLES

The best time to visit Conowingo Dam to see these magnificent birds of prey is in autumn, particularly in November. During this time, the eagles gather along the river to prepare for their annual migration south. The Dam provides a haven for these majestic creatures, offering ample food for the eagles. We like to pick days above 40 degrees. It’s hard to be outside all day when it goes below. We want an excellent parking spot, so we go into the car every few hours and warm up, so again 6:30 or 7:00 a.m. arrival is best.

PHOTOGRAPHY GEAR TO BRING

Of course, the most essential gear is your z om lens. We highly suggest a minimum of 400mm. If you don’t have one, you can rent one. Bring a tripod to stabilize your camera and a monopod for stability while shooting handheld. It’s also wise to bring extra memory cards, batteries, and lens cleaning supplies to ensure you capture every breathtaking moment without interruption.

WHAT ELSE TO BRING

Food, snacks, water, and a comfy chair or camping stool to set up in one spot for extended periods. Binoculars, a hat, gloves, and layers of clothing are also essential, as the weather can be unpredictable, and the viewing areas can be exposed to the elements—hot pockets for your shoes and gloves. 

Armed with your camera gear, you will embark on this exhilarating journey to capture the beauty of the Conowingo Dam and its avian visitors.

USE camera information photography

Conowingo Dam Maryland Photography Location

CONWINGO DAM PHOTOGRAPHY INFORMATION:

A 400mm lens at this location will make you the little fish in the big pond. No pun intended. 400mm is sufficient, but the bigger, the better here. You should rent a lens if you lack the necessary equipment.

You will shoot in shutter priority on a sunny day at 1/1200th of a second. There are other ways to shoot, but that is the easiest way for beginners. Use ISO 100 on sunny days with a high shutter speed. You can pop your ISO up to 400 or 800 on cloudy days. Never go over 800 ISO to avoid grain. Keep your shutter speed at a minimum of 1/1000th for this location to keep the birds crisp in your images. Almost every picture you see on this page is shot at 1/1000th sec.

TIP SUMMARY FOR YOUR TRIP:

  • Photo Tip: You can easily overexpose the white parts of the eagles on sunny days. We use exposure compensation to go down one stop -1 to prevent this.
  • During November through the beginning of January. Mid-November is known to be peak Eagle time.
  • Bring chairs. You will be waiting for the action to happen.
  • Check on the Conowingo Dam Release Schedule – See when the gates open and the fish floods. 1-888-457-4076.
  • Get there around 6:30 a.m. if you want upfront parking on the weekends. It doesn’t matter which spot you choose; each location has pros and cons.

Extra Eyes Photo Tours – Conowingo Dam November Workshop

Don’t go alone. Join our group. Learn photography and get lessons while when waiting on the eagles to fly. You will be sure to come home with incredible eagle photography if you go on the Conowining Dam Photography Tour.

conowingo dam maryland photography

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area information - photography

AREA

INFORMATION

Information

The Conowingo Dam is a large hydroelectric dam in the lower Susquehanna River. There are no fees to go here or to photograph here. There is a large parking lot, but during November, peak eagle photography month, the lot will fill up very early. We like getting here around 6:30 or 7:00 a.m. for a decent parking space.

GOOD CAMPING

CAMPING

Camping

You can list your campground here.  Call us to advertise.

Bar Harbor RV Park & Marina

RV Park – 2024 Rates

4228 Birch Ave.Abingdon, MD 21009410-679-0880800-351-2267Official Website
Site type – 2 people WATERFRONT + PULL THROUGHS OFF WATERFRONT
Pre-Season – April 1 – May 14 Starting at $87.00 Starting at $79.00
Peak Season – May 15 – September 15 Starting at $97.00 Starting at $88.00
Post Season – September 16 – November 30 Starting at $87.00 Starting at $79.00
Additional Person (Age 5 and up, limit 8 people) $5.00 – Per day

Do you want us to send our photography and ghost-hunting friends to your campground to stay during their photography or ghost-hunting trip? Put your campground information here for a special rate of only $ 99.00 a year.  This above is a free advertisement.

For a paid ad, we will put a picture of your establishment, the website link, the phone number, and the information on your campground to make it easy for our photographers and ghost hunters to find you. They are good at getting there in the dark.

FOOD & DINING

FOOD & DINING

Restaurants 

There is no food at this photography hotspot.  A pizza parlor is several miles away, so plan to bring your food and snacks.

Chesapeake Bay Gold Club – Scallops to die for.  The portion is not huge but unbelievably delicious.

28 Karen Dr
Rising Sun, MD 21911
410-658-4343

Add your Restaurant here!

Do you want us to send our photography and ghost-hunting friends to your restaurant after their ghost-hunting trip? Put your restaurant information here. We will put a picture of your establishment, the website link, the phone number, and your information on your restaurant to make it easy for our photographers and ghost hunters to find you.

The best hotels while doing photography

HOTELS

Add Your Hotel Here

Do you want us to send our photography and ghost-hunting friends to your hotel for their photography or ghost-hunting trip? Put your hotel information here. We will put pictures of your hotel, the website link, the phone number, and hotel information.

Would you like to be a featured hotel like this article or this one? Please send us an email. You will be surprised at how affordable our prices can be.

WEATHER

 WEATHER

Don’t forget that you can use a rain sleeve on your camera if it is raining.

Go to our Photography Store after reading all about waterfall photography or neutral density filters.

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