Never get tired of coast nature

Here it is, almost the end of June, and we are approaching the 3rd month here on the coast. And after three months, we are VERY much still enjoying life here. The pace is slower, working from home there is no commute and I am still discovering new things on a regular basis.

I love walking the beach, riding the coast, and just experiencing the feel of world around us. This last week, though, nature put on a serious show just for my benefit…

Just a warning for the squeamish, there are some ‘circle of life’ photos attached…

It started on Sunday, I was up bright and early and out the door for a long ride. Sunday was an 80 mile loop that took me to Newport, across to Toledo, then up the inland route to Lincoln City again. The sun was out and life was good.

Just at the southend of town I spotted 2 kingfishers on the wire over Schooner Creek. I pulled over on the other side of the bridge, and tried to sneak back for a photo, but these guys are SERIOUSLY camera-shy! I have yet to get a photo of one.

Heading south, I always stop at a few places, Boiler Bay, ‘downtown’ Depoe Bay and Cape Foulweather. These are relatively short stops, if there are no whales. You see, even though I am 3 months into the move, whales STILL make me stop and smile, I don’t want to leave cuz they may come up one more time!  On this trip, I  were whaleless. It was a pretty view, as always, but there was nothing to keep me from staying for too long.

At each stop though, there was science in action!

These folks are listening for sea birds that have been radio tagged and they were out in force Sunday. I really wanted to ask if they were hearing anything, but they seemed very much focused and I didn’t want to interrupt. I am still curious though.

Another stop, anytime I go this direction, is the Yaquina Head lighthouse.

This shows you how pretty it was out there! Blue skies everywhere. On this trip, I just tagged the top, looked around a bit, and started back. I had miles to go.

However, as I headed back to the road, I noticed a bunch of bird watchers by the visitor’s center. In addition I was hearing some serious squawking! There happened to be a ranger on the corner, and she told me that there were Peregrin Falcons roosting on the cliff side.

Now I had never seen a falcon before, so this called for a detour. Sure enough, here at the coast, I spot my first one.

In addition to one, there were 3 or 4 flying around and screeching their hearts out! So VERY cool!!

OK, miles still to go!

I hit Newport and started east along Yaquina Bay. I made the stop to check out Sea Lion docks, sure enough there was some serious sunbathing going on!

It seems hard to be a Sea Lion in Newport Oregon!

There was a pretty decent low tide going on, and when I looked out toward the bay from here. this handsome dude (or dudette) was strutting along looking for lunch.

Yep, Blue Herons still warrant stops as well!

OK miles to go!

I traveled further along the bay, and then to the Yaquina River. I had the road to my self and the weather was perfect. (For the record I had the sunblock on as well!)

I did have to stop for this though.

I am really not sure it this post has any function aside from an Osprey roost, but the osprey seemed happy to claim it as her own.

From here on, nature took a break for about 20 miles. There was one tiny brown squirrel on the side of the road who stared me in the eye and charged the bike, but he swerved away when I yelled in surprise! “AAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!” Stupid squirrel!

I did spot a deer and a fawn at a quick pit stop

but from here on, it was just a pleasant ride, with nothing to write home about… Well, except for this fellow about a mile from the house…

Yep, sometimes turkey vultures do land. He was just a walking along the road….

But one ride does a not a week make!

Monday and Tuesday were hard stressful work days! Michelle sent me out for a beach walk Tuesday night to clear the head!

The waves were crashing

And there was this REALLY cool rock

But soon I was seeing these guys.

Yep, the turkey vultures were walking the beach with me. But they had a reason.

Now I am sharing the next photos because I think ALL nature is cool. But it is NOT always pretty. Disney’s Lion King coined the phrase “Circle of Life” Everything lives, everything eats something and everything dies. When they die around here, these guys are the sanitation engineers helping keep the beach clean.

That’s what I saw here, a seal had washed ashore, and these guys were doing their jobs!

Sad but amazing…

But the day was not quite over, I had to go out to snag a picture of the moon.

While I was out there, sure as hell, I saw a bat fly out from the back yard woods over the house! I was a total dork, and just pointed at it to no one at all! I was there alone! Love bats!

Finally, last night, was a 40 mile out and back to the lighthouse.

Remember earlier when I saw no whales on the long ride? Last night was the complete opposite!

There was 1 at Boiler bay, 3 at Depoe Bay, 2 at Cape Foulweather and 1 at the lighthouse. Seven whales!!

At Foulweather, as I was leaving a car from Washington came and parked, so I circled around to talk to them. I Pulled up next to them, and they put the window down about a quarter of the way. I pointed at the overlook, and told them about the whales. The window came ALL the way down and they were very excited! Thanking me again and again, I think they were afraid I was a smelly panhandler!

Here are the best of the photos from last night.

Folks, there are places in the world that are worth visiting again and again. The Oregon coast is one of these. I used to think I knew the place well from all our vacations! But now, with the rides and walks, I realize I had barely scratched the surface. I am so happy we moved, and I just never know what I will see!

I will keep sharing and try to let you experience it as well!

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