Sunday, September 30, 2012

 Full moon setting just as the sun is rising. Above, my view to the west, below, the view to the east.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

 What I've been working on this week. I'm ready to sew the pages in!

Friday, September 28, 2012

 Mount Rainier rises through the mist 85 miles as the crow flies from my view on Double Bluff beach.
 The sky was so different today as I was driving home, so I stopped by the beach to see. It was kind of misty to the east, and a bit darker. I stitched together some panoramic shots to try and capture the clouds, as well as the in-coming tide. Then I just went and sat in the sun for a while.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Saw this rosebush, and marveled at the size of the rosehips, and also that there is new leaf growth and blossoms on this fall day. Don't they know there is no chance of ripening?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

More wildlife today - a nice-looking coyote was hunting in our field in the middle of the day. Very unusual to see one in daylight, let alone one that just stood there while I drove past, stopped, and backed up to take the photo. He didn't seem too concerned about me, but did turn around and slid back into the dark forest.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

We spotted this yellow jacket with some type of grub or worm. He proceeded to reduce it to a shell.

Cathi and I took a day off to have a grand adventure! We'd been wanting to go to the Olympic Peninsula to see where the dams had been removed from the Elwha River, so we finally made it happen. Up before dawn to catch the ferry - while we waited for it, the view across the lake toward the road, with mist hugging the ground as a car approaches.
 Next we watched an amazing sunrise from the ferry, thanks in part to the fires east of the mountains!
 The site of the Elwha Dam, now completely removed and being replanted. The bare hillside was the location of the powerhouse, and the dam itself was on the left, between the rocky canyon walls. Upstream, you can see where some vegetation is already greening up the lake bed.
 We drove up to the other end of the long narrow lake, where you can get out and walk around on it via the old boat ramp. We met a group of scientists with a UAV - unmanned aerial vehicle - flying it over the lake bed to take photos and gather data. Here is more info. It is a joint effort with the USGS, BLM, and Nat. Park Service. The plane is a Raven RQ 11A. The guys were very nice and explained a lot to us!
 Then we went on to walk about 1/2 mile down the lake bed as far as we could. The valley had been logged before the dam was built 100 years ago, and the stumps survived under the water. Because of the amount of the sediment: sand, mud and gravel, we have decided there are likely just as many stumps under our feet, too!
 Cathi and Tui playing around one of the huge cedar stumps, showing the spring-board notches used to cut it down.
 Some really good news is that the salmon are already coming in to spawn - we saw a couple of old spawners on the beach. You can see how the nose really hooks around!
 A panoramic view from the end, looking back to the south and the Olympic Mountains. We couldn't go any further on this side of the river because of steep cliffs.
 This panorama is from much further south, looking back to the north to the area we stopped at.
 Then we drove up the river valley to the next dam, the Glines Canyon dam. It is still in the process of removal, which involves dynamite! Unfortunately, they weren't blasting while we were here! But we could drive to the far end of the lake and hike down to it. Since it is much more recent than the first lake, there isn't any vegetation at all, just lots of rocks and mud. This is looking toward the south where the river ran into the lake.
 Since they had the dam area restricted, we had to settle for peek-a-boo views through the trees. But you can just make out the breached dam, with a huge crane sitting on the left side. It was originally over 200 feet tall! They are taking this one out in stages, so as not to overwhelm the lower part of the river with sediment and water all at once.
 There is a wonderful little waterfall, Madison Falls, just a very short hike from the road.
 Finally, we drove out to the Straits of San de Fuca to see the river mouth. Above is the view across the estuary, and you can barely see the straits over the vegetation. Below, from the other side of the river, looking back at the estuary. It was sunset, and we couldn't really see any of the sediment fanning out into the straits, but they told us it is building up the beaches here.
All in all, an amazing day!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

 I sat by what's left of the pond this afternoon, and it was teeming with life! Several dragonflies flew around, and these skimmers were landing on my hands and head. After I looked at the photos that I took, it became apparent there were a lot more than I had thought! Their wings are getting pretty tattered this late in the season, so I could tell them apart. The top photo has his left wings intact, but the next photo the lower left wing was damaged. And there were several others. They were also doing the 'unmentionable' dance!
 This green darner, which I have learned is the official Washington State Insect, was extremely territorial, and spent his time facing me like this, then darting off to chase away intruders. He was having quite a time of it, what with all the other dragonflies, birds, and other large insects that were attracted to the water.
 There was a continuous parade of birds while I sat there. First a group of cute chestnut-backed chickadees flitted through the trees and splashed in the water. Then some sparrows showed up, and last a squadron of these red crossbills. I just missed the better shot - there were at least 8 of them lined up on the shore, but they started to take off before I realized it! A couple of robins and some lbj's completed the lineup. A nice early fall day in the woods.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

 Clients invited me over to see their finished project - an extended deck, and the finished landscaping. It was lovely, and they had these chocolate sunflowers - yummy!
 Then I went to Langley to see a talk about the Seattle World's Fair 50th anniversary at the library, and afterwards strolled around town listening to various jam sessions of the Django Fest.

 Equinox eve, and Apollo and I head down to the apple trees to assess the harvest.
 He explores the branches laid bare by the deer's appetites, and I decide the apples that have grown out of their reach are not quite ready to pick yet. We'll do this again another day.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Waxing crescent moonset just after sunset on another lovely late summer day.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

 Fogged in this morning, which is a more normal summer day for us here. I can hear the foghorns from my bedroom window. It burns off by noon, but I stopped by the beach to catch a few shots. Here, the view behind the beach, looking up the hill. The sun is almost poking through.
 Looking down the beach, sea and sky blend into nothingness.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

One of our upcoming Photo Art Journal themes is "Seasons", and I have chosen this spot to document the changing seasons. There is a signpost that I can set my camera on, allowing me to get basically the same view each time. I've been stopping by every month or so since Feb., so I am getting a nice progression. The season changes are more subtle here, but still noticeable. We aren't sure how Catherine will choose to bind the books, but she mentioned the possibility of having all four season photos next to each other, so that would be fun for my progression pics.

Other than that, it is such a pretty little spot, just a pull-off by the road. Easy to stop by and lovely to see. Our gorgeous late summer weather continues!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Cara spotted our little Barred Owl as she came up the driveway, so we snuck back down there and had a little chat with her. Here she's looking back over her tail at us. She eventually got tired of us and glided away further into the woods. Pretty unusual to see her in the middle of the day.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

 Sunset over Whidbey Island from the ferry boat. The salmon fishing is really good right now - all these boats were headed home with their catch (hopefully!)

Saturday, September 15, 2012

 Apollo on a rock at sunset. Another lovely day!

Friday, September 14, 2012

 Here are photos of my completed book. I hope to use it as a daily companion, jotting down interesting information I come across, noting events, and adding photos and memorabilia. It's about 6" wide and 9" tall.

The binding is the long stitch, which is simple but very effective, and allows for weaving or other ornamentation.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Another beautiful day - September has been wonderful so far, with the exception of last Monday's stormy weather. Today the smoke from the fires in Eastern Washington tinted the sunrise a bright red, and even a bit later, when I took this photo, redness lingered in the atmosphere. This borage blossom greeted the sun.