September 21, Seattle


We ended up staying in Seattle for two months again for various reasons including motorcycle repairs and doctor visits. All is complete now and we are on our way south along the Oregon coast--not new road--but a new campground, Sunset Bay State Park, just south of Coos Bay. Between Yellowstone and Seattle, we had a very nice visit to Glacier National Park and we did lots of hiking, though no 10 milers, and enjoyed ourselves there as usual. The "road to the sun" road was closed due to rock slides for most of our visit, but did get cleared and our last day was spent taking the motorcycle back and forth across it. It does present some truly spectacular scenery and I'm glad we didn't have to miss it. We also went by one of our favorite falls, Running Eagle Fall, in the Two Medicine area (picture on the August 24, 2004, report). Since we had seen it before, we didn't carry the camera with us on the hike back to it--big mistake--because of Spring snow melt there was so much water coming thru, it had become a double falls: one above the arch and the one below we had seen before. Fantastic, and us with no camera! You'd think we'd have learned a lesson there but we seem to be carrying the camera less and less these days.


Lake St. Mary & Mount Fusilade

Shedding Big Horn Sheep

The first week in Seattle we spent with Riley's family in a reunion of siblings, both his brothers and their families were there as well as Roxie and hers. We didn't take a picture one, so all the pictures included in this report were taken by others and passed on to us (most by brother Randy). Roxie had done a wonderful job of organizing the affair and we all had a very good time. The first few days were spent camping at Fort Ebey, where Neal & Roxie took folks out kayaking, in addition to all the usual campground activities. Keith brought his new girlfriend, Mandy, and her two kids (Spencer and Maddy), and it was fun meeting them and having little ones present.


On the ferry to Whidbey Island

Kayaking at Deception Pass

Eric, Aaron, Riley, & Randy

Spencer, Lindsey, Genna, Roxie, Rachel, & Maddy

Neal cooking salmon--yum!

Margie, Genna, Jo, & Rachel

We then went back to Neal's place in Bellingham where he took all for a sail in his sailboat--what a guy! Then it was back to Seattle and Roxie's home for the rest of the week.


The sailboat

Tyler taking it easy

Captain Neal enjoying lunch at sea

Riley at the helm

On Thursday evening, my brother Richard and his wife Beverly showed up and I took off to spend some time with them and sister Gaynell. My other brother Lloyd and wife Ferrell were spending the summer in Port Orchard and we visited them for a day of birding on the Theler Wetlands. We also visited Gabe & Jenefer to see the new baby, Aubrey Jack, a very cute, amiable baby, who allowed us to hold him without fussing too much. Finally, just before we left town, Alex & Olivia got married in Gaynell's back yard. It was a beautiful wedding and Gaynell's yard looked great and was a wonderful place to have the ceremony. We are so happy for them. All in all, it was a great family time.


Jenefer, Aubrey Jack & Gabe

Mandy & Keith at Paradise, Mount Rainier

Margie, Lloyd & Ferrell at Theler Wetlands

Bird watching at Lake Washington near UW Auboretum

The bride and groom: Olivia & Alex

Carter family photo

On leaving Seattle, we headed for the southwest coast of Washington to do some serious bird watching as well as relaxing on the beach. It was a successful trip on both accounts. We saw 8 new birds, including 2 rarities: Sharp-tailed Sandpiper and Ruff (another sandpiper). These two were seen at the Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge along with many other birds--we identified some 30 species. I recommend the place to anyone interested in bird watching. Lots of birds winter over here, so it's a good place to bird all year, not just in Spring & Fall.


Cape Disappointment

Cape Disappointment Lighthouse

As we traveled through Portland, we had a brief visit with my nephew Luke and wife Amy, who just moved there this summer. They have a very lovely home, and we enjoyed our visit with them as always. We sure do have nice families!


Luke, Amy & Sadie in front of new home
Coming down the Oregon coast, we found another great birding spot, the Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area. We saw lots of Pelagic Cormorants in winter plumage, Brown Pelicans and Western Gulls. The best time for this area is Spring and Summer when the Common Murres and Tufted Puffins are in residence.

Today it's raining, but the forecast is for clearing, sunny weather and we look forward to more beach walking.

Love to all,
Margie & Riley

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Bird Diary
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September 13, 2006 Ocean City State Park, WA
Brown Pelicans
Western Gulls
Ring-billed Gulls
American Crows

Damon Point State Park

Brown Pelicans
Double-crested Cormorants
Mew Gulls

Gray's Harbor Wildlife Refuge

Brant (sea goose): j
Barn Swallows
Canada Geese
Great Blue Herons

Hoquiam Sewer Ponds

Mallards
Northern Shovelers
Song Sparrows
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September 14, 2006 Grayland Beach State Park, WA
Heermann's Gulls: 1st & 2nd winter j
California Gulls
Glaucous-winged Gulls
Ring-billed Gulls

Tokeland Marina

Black-winged Scoter: f
Marbled Godwits (at least 200)
Willet
Western Gulls
Double-crested Cormorants
Brown Pelicans
American Crows
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September 15, 2006 Cape Disappointment State Park, WA
Brandt's Cormorants
Northern Harrier
Brown Pelicans
American Crows
White-winged Scoters
Double-crested Cormorants
Caspian Terns
Glaucous-winged Gulls
Heermann's Gulls
Sanderlings
Western Gulls
California Gulls
Turkey Vultures
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September 16, 2006 Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge, WA
White-tailed Kite: j
Sharp-tailed Sandpipers
Pectoral Sandpipers
Ruff (sandpiper)
Belted Kingfisher
Barn Swallows
Killdeer
Mallards
Great Blue Herons
Ring-billed Gulls
Turkey Vultures
Tree Swallows
Violet-green Swallows
Northern Harrier
Long-billed Dowitcher
Pied-billed Grebes
American Coots
Song Sparrows
American Kestrel
American Goldfinch
Common Yellowthroat
Great Egrets
Sandhill Cranes
Greater Yellowlegs
Northern Flicker
Red-shouldered Hawk: j
Red-winged Blackbirds
Rock Pigeons
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September 20, 2006 Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area, Oregon
Pelagic Cormorants
Western Gulls
Brown Pelicans
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