Too Much of a Good Thing

Last Wednesday at Ocean Shores was one of those magical moments when I become totally absorbed in nature. Although I left the sunshine behind somewhere around Elma, it was relatively warm and, diffused by a layer of fog, the light was adequate, if not ideal. Everything else about the day seemed ideal. I started birding between 8:30 and 9:00 AM and realized at 4:00 PM that I was beginning to get hungry.

There were 1000’s of birds surrounding me, sometimes impossible to see without a scope or telephoto lens. There were sandpipers as far as the eye could see, blending in with the shallow water:

wetland full of peeps

Amazingly, as long as you tread lightly, the birds stood their ground, refusing to waste energy needed for the long flight South. If you didn’t approach too close, all they did was glance your way to make sure you were just another birder.

sandpipers resting

Further out, small islands came alive as you approached:

peeps on a small island

All it took to realize just how alive these fields were was for one of the two

Peregrine Falcon in Flight

peregrines to take off, and the air was filled with streams of flashing light.

Shore Birds Flashing their wings

The company of a small group of birders made the day even better, as they pointed out birds I didn’t see or species I didn’t even know existed.

It wasn’t until I got home that I realized how many shots I had taken during those hours — well over 400 shots, many of them good enough that I felt bad deleting them, at the same time feeling overwhelmed by so many images. Nearly a week later and I still haven’t come to terms with the days’s shoot, perhaps because I’ve spent so little time working with them.

Leslie’s brother and sister-in-law came Thursday, and we made a beautiful trip to Mt. Rainier. Needless to say I took advantage of the sun to capture more images, images I haven’t even had time to download to the computer yet.

And after they left Saturday afternoon, Leslie and I spent Sunday at Belfair, refusing to miss the opportunity to take advantage of the the sunshine on what’s been a extremely wet summer. The weather is supposed to turn here in a couple of days, but tomorrow I’ll be in Vancouver, so it’ll be awhile before I can make sense of all these raw, unsorted, unedited pictures.

Sometimes you can just have too much of a good thing.

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