Trying to capture photos of a bald eagle standing on ice about 50 yards from shore when driving in a car at 40 miles per hour can be, well, a tricky proposition. So, under no circumstances should one try this. Instead, do what I did.

Ask America's national bird since 1782 to pose for an impromptu photo shoot, of course.

Well, not exactly.

In my case, ultimately, there was no distracted driving, in the traditional sense, only a quick glance at an eagle standing on the ice of Chickawaukie Pond late Friday afternoon, Jan. 8 as I drove down Route 17 to Rockland.

In a few seconds, I had to process what I thought I had seen then find a safe place to quickly turn around, head back to the believed spot and park my vehicle on the side of the road without, you know, scaring this majestic creature.

Then I had to scramble in the back seat of my car and rustle through my bag for my camera. I had to briskly walk to the most advantageous spot to take a photo of the bird, while at the same time changing the settings on my camera to have the correct aperture and shutter exposures.

It was all guess work at that point.

There would be no time for test shots for light. I knew I might only get one or two shots before I spooked the animal into flight.

So, I started shooting as a I walked and managed to get a handful of shots; albeit, some of the most dramatic ones were out of focus.

In any case, I managed to capture a few shots before the amazingly beautiful bird flew out of sight.

It was a rare encounter with America's symbol of pride and strength.