Heermann’s Gull & Glaucous-winged Gull @ Ocean Shores, WA, August 3rd, 2017

We went to Ocean Shores when the smoke from the wild fires in British Columbia rolled into Washington State.  The smoke was covering the sky at Ocean Shores as well, but the air quality seemed a lot better than where we live.  We camped at Quinault Marina & RV Park, and walked all the way to Damon Point.  There were many gulls swarming to cating herrings.  At the tip of the Damon Point, Bob spotted a large whale swimming back  and forward among the gulls.   To my regret,  I left my camera in the RV, and couldn’t take any pictures!  (The last time I was there in late fall, I carried my camera for the walk, but didn’t take any pictures, so I didn’t expect to see anything in particular.)

The following day, we went for the walk at the North Jetty beach.

The waves were not as rough this time.  Surf riders were not there, but there were a lot of Gulls and crab shells on the beach.

Heermann’s Gull

Glaucous-winged Gull

Crab exuvia?

I panicked when I saw this, so I googled, and found out that it is a natural process called molt.

Scientists call it crab exuvia.

“It can look like a major disaster occurred to the crab population, but it’s as natural as kids outgrowing their old shoes,” ODFW said.

http://www.beachconnection.net/news/crabshell111313_116.php

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Naches Peak Loop, August 18, 2017

On the way to Idaho for the eclipse, we camped near Rainier National Park, and hiked the Naches Peak Loop trail.  It was a nice and easy hike with wild flowers and a magnificent view of Mt. Rainier.  We did the loop clockwise,  following the advice from “DAY HIKING MOUNT RAINIER” by  Craig Romeo.  

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Wild Flowers@Hurricane Ridge, July 31, 2017

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Rocky Mountain National Park

After the Pagosa Folk’ N Bluegrass Festival, we went home via Rocky Mountain National Park, Wind Cave national Park, Mt. Rushmore, and the Badlands.

At Rocky Mountain National Park, we camped at Glacier Basin Campground.

The following day, we hiked to the Lock.

On the way, we stopped briefly at Alberta Falls.  the mist was so nice.

The Lock was breath taking, but it was so windy, we couldn’t relax.

On the way back from the Lock, we met young hikers at a trail juction to Mills lake.  He told us the trail has snow, but it is a “must see” lake, so we went.

Mills lake was indeed beautiful, and a little less windy, but clouds were moving in so we couldn’t stay there too long.  When we returned to the Glacier Basin campground, it was so windy, we could’t sit outside.  That night, it got  so windy that it kept us up almost all night long.   In the morning,  blue skies were back, and the wind had died down, so we hiked to Sprague Lake.  We didn’t have to hike long, but it was still beautiful.  Quite a few people were fly fishing, and birds were flying around those fishermen.

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Yellow-headed Blackbird & Black-billed Magpie @ Monte Vista National Wildlife Refuge, Colorado, June 9th, 2017

After camping by the Rio Grande in Del Norte, we went to a larger town, Monte Vista to get groceries.  While looking at a map, we discovered there is a National Wildlife Refuge near the town, so we had to go.   There I was able to capture the photos of a Yellow-headed Blackbird & a Black-billed Magpie.  It is a very nice NWR.

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Road trip to Colorado, June 2017

We made our trip to the Pagosa Folk’ N Bluegrass festival in June this year.   Last year, we went there via Moab and Durango, but this time we decided to take HWY 70 all the way to Glenwood Springs, and go down south on hwy 82 and  24.  I’m glad we took a different route.  Instead of a 100 degree desert, we drove through snow covered mountains.  

After coming down the winding road, we reached Twin Lakes, and had lunch there.   There was hardly anyone there…

We camped by the Rio Grande in a small town called Del Norte in Southern Colorado.  There were a lot of Magpies flying over the river.

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Barred Owl

Today, we went for a walk in the woods right across from our house, and came across a Barred Owl.  I ran back to get my camera while Bob kept an eye on the bird.  We were able to see it because the bird heard us walking, and flew to another tree.  Otherwise we would have never found it!

 

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