Wednesday, January 11, 2012

A grey day on Reifel Island

We had a young relative from Guadalajara, Mexico, with us for the day. "If it doesn't rain, we'll take you to Reifel Island," I promised. And though the clouds hung low overhead, the rain hadn't returned by noon; we made sure she had a thick, warm, wool sweater and a tuque, and went to Reifel.

The lagoons were quiet, even empty in some places. In the absence of sunshine, all the colours were muted. .

First lagoon, around 2 PM.

The highlight of the afternoon was finding a barred owl sleeping in a tree not far from the trail.

Eagle watching the horizon.

Bufflehead, the brightest sight of the day.

Mallards sleeping on a background of swirly shadows.

Ah! Stained-glass colours. All they need is a ray of sunlight.

The male wood duck was happy to pose. His mate, not so much.

A timid towhee dashes out for a seed, then hides in the underbrush again.

A bit of warm colour, mini suns on a mossy log.

In the parking lot, I made our visitor wear that warm sweater. "I'm fine," she said, but I insisted. We compromised on the tuque: it could stay in the car. An hour later, walking in a stiff breeze on the outer trail, she admitted, reluctantly, that she was beginning to feel the cold. We headed back, and I walked her into the warm sanctuary store to recover.

Much later, after I'd posted her photos on Facebook, she commented. "Ohhhh my God, it was freezing!!!"

It's all in what you're used to. I have been complaining that it's too warm. Maybe I need to adjust my expectations.


  1. Oh you lucky bum!!!!!!! I've seen a barred owl in the wild only once. I supposed I should be a little sad he is way over here on the West Coast, causing problems for Spotted owls .... but still. I'd feel so fortunate to have seen him.

  2. The Wood Duck pictures are so brilliant. - Margy


If your comment is on a post older than a week, it will be held for moderation. Sorry about that, but spammers seem to love old posts!

Also, I have word verification on, because I found out that not only do I get spam without it, but it gets passed on to anyone commenting in that thread. Not cool!