Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Bird Watching With Care

!7 October 2011 Monday
My dear friend, Care, of 46 years is joining me today for a bird watching session. She is a birding expert and I am looking forward to this trip I have planned for today. The next inlet over towards the south is Henderson Inlet and is known for a great bird and seal habitat. The morning skies are blue as can be, but as we approach the marina we are hanging out in some light fog, which will soon be gone.

We depart the marina at about high tide and we see several flocks of birds before we enter Henderson Inlet. On the northern side of the inlet we are spotting loons, cormorants, grebes, surf scooters and Care is quick to note that some are sporting their winter plumage. We reach the end of the charted waters but still have a depth of 20 feet of ebbing waters. I continue further up the inlet until we are in 9 feet of water and have come across hundreds of surf scooters, which I try to capture with my little camera as they take flight.

Birds seen with Care:
Thick Billed Murre
Black and Common Surf Scooters
Horned Grebe
Western Grebe
Pacific Loon
Double Crested Cormorant
Pigeon Guillemot
Imature Bald Eagle

We turn and now follow the southern shore back out where we come across the old log booms areas which has 2 large inlets. The signs on the pilings state that this is a protected habitat for seals and we need to stay 300 feet away. It would be a great place to anchor out of the way and take P2 into the inlets at some later time. I look forward to that adventure.

Next we cross over and set a course for McMicken Island. I know Care will enjoy this place as much as I do. We close up the windows and put on the heater to warm us up a bit. Care likes the buoy line set up and in no time we are munching on the chicken sandwiches I made early this morning. With lunch done, we put P2 in the water and head to shore to see what the low tide is offering us. Gifts From The Sea, as Ann Morough Lindberg wrote decades ago. My older sister always loved the chapter on the Beach. The tidal spit that connects Harstene Island to McMicken Island is revealing herself and Hira tries hard to balance herself on land's end.
Hira and Land's End

Care on Terra Firma

A Proud Porta-bote Owner

Team Players Make Many Adventures

Mt Rainier

The ebbing tide reveals lots of shells on the beach, but the best were several sand dollars that had departed this world, so I did not feel bad about picking some up for my great nieces. Take a look at Sand Dollars on Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sand_dollar

I certainly had a wonderful time having Care on board before she too, takes flight and becomes a snow bird, just like her fine feathered friends. Care, see you in the spring when you migrate north with all the birds.

Something went a miss on our tracking from Zittles Marina along the northern shore of Henderson Inlet.
Today's run: 21.1nm