Friday, August 31, 2012

Care Joins Me for Exploring and Birding

This has been a fruitful week on many fronts. Care is a 47 year friend of mine from Army days. She is an expert birder and has run the Bluebird Project on the Air Force base of McChord for over 20 years. She is joining me for a full 2 day trip.

We head up Case Inlet in South Puget Sound and swing into Joemma State Park to show it to her and immediately I spot a flock of birds and Care with a quick look in her monocular states they are Wilson's Phalaropes. This is new for me. Birds are taking on their winter plumage and are beginning to migrate from the north. Even pigeon guillemots have a new look to them.'s_Phalarope
I see a shadow of a big bird on the water and look up. It is an Osprey carrying a fish. I don't see many ospreys in Washington compared to the Columbia River and I really miss seeing them. From there I cruise to a new area for me as I want to check out a remote, undeveloped State Park. On the way we see
Red necked grebes.

We take Herron Island to port and follow the shoreline for 2 nm and start looking for Haley Property State Park and a Totem Pole. It has been owned by the state since the 80's but has remained undeveloped. Once owned by the Haley family since the 1920's. They owned candy company, Brown and Haley in Tacoma and are famous for making Almond Roca. The company is still in business. As we approach , it is looking quite interesting with a lagoon, old weathered logs with silver patina and a smart looking silver Totem of a Raven. The park has over 170 acres upland and has second growth trees on it. We anchor in 12 feet of water with my lunch hook and the tide is beginning to flood. After a quick bite to eat we row ashore and beach comb. This is a beautiful place. A red Crossbill couple land on the shoreline. Care says they are forest dwellers and with their cross bill they can open the conifer cones. It is unusual to see them on the beach, so this is a treat for me. Click on the link an see their very unusual bill.

As you can see this place is fascinating and I am going to return as soon as I can. I want to find out more about the Totem. One link said the candy company made small sticks and called them Totems. Another alluded to the fact that perhaps Mr. Haley carved the Totem. I have lots of questions about this new gem I have discovered. We depart and cross Case Inlet and head straight down Pickering Passage to Jarrall's Cove. Care has never been here either.

We take delight in seeing the numerous jellyfish. I said to Care they look like egg yokes and in fact, they are called, Egg Yolk Jelly Fish.

I see lots of these and they are called,
Moon Jelly Fish.

We traveled 15nm today and had a great time seeing new birds and a new park for me.