Monday, August 25, 2008


Another sunset over the Pacific

I have been playing in Photoshop and came up with this sunset photo from last October. It is the same Pacific Ocean as the previous ones have been but about 2600 or so miles away, to the south and west. This was taken on the Hawaiian island of Maui, a few miles south of the town of Lahaina while Pat & I were visiting there last October. I think sunsets are nice regardless of where they are from. And Hawaii is a pretty nice place to visit.

Maui sunset
Maui sunset.

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Saturday, August 23, 2008


The beach at Ocean Mist Resort

Okay, another week has gone by and I am just now getting the next post made of our trip to the ocean. I went through the photos from the beach at Ocean Mist Resort and came up with a dozen photos that kind of show what it was like. The day was overcast as it often is on the coast but it was not very cold. The beach there is reached by walking along a trail over the sand that at first goes through grasses and other plants that can grow in the sand. It is about a quarter of a mile down there and the walking is not bad but it is not a wheelchair accessible path. In Washington State you are allowed to drive vehicles on the beach at some places, one of which is the main beach at Ocean Shores, so at that location a person in a chair can get right out there.

The beach 01
This first photo shows Pat at a place near the start of the trail, with another couple ahead who are also heading to the beach. You can see the trail markers standing u alongside the trail farther along.

The beach 02
Here are the two trail markers viewed from a different direction. There really is an ocean out there but we are standing a bit above it so you can't see it beyond the grass.

The beach 025
Pat is approaching the first of the two trail markers. People have a lot of fun adding things they have found along the shore to these trail markers so they are changing all of the time.

The beach 03
Ah, there is it! Yes there really is an ocean out there. The beach here is quite flat and the sand is very fine grained. When there is a strong wind that sand can actually blow in the wind. I'd rather not take my car down to the beach under those conditions. My paint job doesn't need to be sand blasted!

The beach 10
Pat likes to send photos from her cell phone to her daughters. We had a good strong cell phone signal on the beach so it was easy to send them but the overcast lighting didn't offer a lot of contrast so those small photos didn't really show much. The bigger cameras do a better job.

The beach 04
We walked down there in the afternoon so the sun was fairly low in the sky behind the clouds. I guess that is what makes this look almost like a sunset. You can also see that there is a pretty good surf down there and surfing is a popular sport, although they all do it in a dry suit as the water here in the north Pacific is pretty cold. My younger son doesn't surf on a surf board but he likes to come down here and use his boogie board. And you really should be a good swimmer to venture out there as the rip tides are very strong at times.

The beach 05
I don't know what these little shore birds were but they made an interesting photo with their reflections in the wet sand. They all move in mass farther up the beach as that big 7th wave breaks and comes up far enough to reach them. Notice the seagull flying toward us near the left side of the photo.

The beach 06
Here a group of seagulls are flying along the beach in mass. You can also see a fishing boat on the horizon about a third of the way into the photo from the left side. That pounding surf is pretty loud when you are this close but it is kind of a soothing background noise from up in the campground. Good night music.

The beach 07
A closeup view of a flock of seagulls flying along the beach. Notice how everything is gray and white without much in the way of color.

The beach 08
Now we introduce a bit of color. A father & his daughter are digging in the sand a short distance away from us. Beaches are a fascinating place for kids.

The beach 09
Here is the young girl with her Mom as they were racing up the beach toward the trail. The girl beat Mom to the top!

The beach 11
And here's the beach trail from the beach end of it, showing the RVs in the background. Ours is just across the street from one of those near the left side of the photo. And you are getting a closer view of one of the trail markers. Things like that bright orange boat float help to see this thing on these gray days. Some of these photos lacked color so much that I tried changing one of them to a black & white image in Photoshop. Can you tell which one it was?

These photos make it look kind of cold and almost foggy down there. It wasn't bad and was never cold during our trip. There was almost no rain while we were there. Right on the beach there really isn't very much color. Notice how much brighter the photos look when people are introduced, or those farther up the beach where the grass and other plant life is. I have some other landscapes from other places along the beach farther north and I'll probably post them next. These were all taken right at the resort.

I tried editing some of the photos that I had uploaded to Flickr and this post got all messed up. I am just finishing redoing it, will save and then check it out. I hope it will be okay. If you came by during the interim while I have been working on it, I am sorry about the missing middle part.

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Friday, August 15, 2008


Ocean Mist Resort

We got away a bit after 11am on Monday, Aug. 11th and drove south on I-5 through Seattle (slow traffic even at that time of the day) to Olympia where we turned west toward the ocean beaches. Across the Black Hills to Elma where we stopped for a late lunch at the Rusty Tractor Restaurant. From there it was just about an hour on out to our destination, Ocean Mist Resort at Ocean City, WA. We arrived about 16:00 and were able to check into space B-108 which is one of the spaces in the outer part of the park, nearest to the ocean. I got us hooked up and we hopped in the car to run over to Ocean Shores for a stop at the grocery store for a few things that we forgot to bring along. I'll break this down into multiple posts about various parts of the trip, with this first part being about the Resort itself.

Ocean Mist 01
The sign along the highway is the first thing you see. This park is one of nine that are in the group owned by my membership park, K/M Resorts. Ocean Mist is one of the original four they owned when I first joined the group in June, 1998. I haven't yet been to all of them but have been back to this one many times as it is a favorite, but this was Pat's first time here.

Ocean MIst 02
The park is made up of two parts, the original front part and the newer back part which is across a bridge over a creek and right out on the beach. This photo is of the clubhouse which located in the older part. There are a volleyball court, horse shoes, children's play toys, a fire pit and lots of grass outside plus large TV, kitchen, puzzles, book exchange, etc. inside. These membership parks have events going on all of the time, especially during the summer. We didn't partake in any of them as I am not a poker player and most things happen on the weekends. We are retired so usually go camping during the week, leaving the facilities for those still working on the weekends.

Ocean mist 03
There is no swimming pool here but there is a hot tub, located beside the men's showers & restroom, across from the clubhouse. For those who really want to swim, there is the ocean, but it is cold and there is a lot of surf.

Ocean Mist 04
The outer part of the Resort is across this bridge that goes over Conner Creek. This bridge looks a bit imposing but I don't find it any problem to drive over. It is no problem in the RV which is pretty large but in a car you can feel like you are about to drop the wheels on one side of your car off the side into the center part. The walkway on the right side is fairly new, having been added since I was last here in 2002. When I was first here in 1998, the outer area had not yet been developed.

Ocean Mist 05
This photo was taken from the bridge, looking north along Conner Creek. You can see the next bridge beyond ours. I think the water here is fresh water and it never seems to go up and down, so I'd guess it isn't affected by tides.

Ocean Mist 06
This is a view of the outer row of RVs. Ours is the one you can see the front of just beyond the blue pickup and it's trailer in about the center of the photo.

Ocean Mist 10
Here is our rig in it's space. Our electric jacks did not want to work on the right side so I ended up using the plastic blocks to raise that side to level the RV. You want to be as level as you can both for the benefit of the refrigerator and to help the slide out work smoothly. We will have to have the jacks checked and they should still be covered on warantee as I recall they were to be covered for two or three years. There were three nice groups of pampas grass just outside the door of our RV.

Ocean Mist 07
This view shows my favorite lady walking ahead of me as we were walking toward the bridge to go check out the clubhouse. Just beyond Pat is the building here in the outer part of the campground that contains the laundromat (there are two- one at the clubhouse) and both men's and women's showers & restrooms. Straight ahead is the bridge and it really isn't as far as it looks to be in this picture as this was taken with a fairly wide angel lens (18mm.) You can see her cell phone hooked to her belt. We had good cell phone connections all along the beach.

Ocean Mist 09
Ever since the outer area was opened there have been a couple of rental trailers available for members to rent. It used to be that you would get the space beside the trailer for your RV, the idea being that non-RVer friends or relatives would stay there while the member had their own rig close by. Now they have added a couple of what look to be park model RVs in those spaces.

Ocean Mist 08
The trail to the beach is just to the right of the right hand park model RV shown in the previous photo. The beach is about a quarter of a mile walk along a sand path through the tall grass. This part of the beach is always above the high tide line, although some areas here might get some salt water at high tide along with strong winds, like sometimes happens in the winter. And you do want to heed that warning sign about the tides. These beaches are notorious for rip tides. Some people drown every summer on the Washington beaches from not understanding how they work and being sucked out to sea. The open ocean is not a good place for people who are just learning to swim to practice. I'll show you some photos later of the waves that break on shore. This is the open Pacific Ocean. The next big land mass to the west is Asia.

We spent three nights here and thoroughly enjoyed it. It was 192 miles down there from home or 384 round trip. Our RV gets 8 miles to a gallon of gas which cost $3.919/gallon when we filled up, or about $188 for the trip. The campground cost nothing beyond my $280 plus tax dues for each year. $188 would not have covered three nights in motels down there and we ate all meals except lunches at the RV rather than paying restaurant prices. So, I think that even for a short trip like this one, it was cheaper to take the RV than it would have been with the car. And besides, I like being off in the RV. More soon.

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Sunday, August 10, 2008


Another week has slipped by

It has been a week since my last post. I don't know for sure just where the time is going but it sure has been flying by. We have been busy but are taking a few days off to head for the Pacific Ocean tomorrow with our RV for a few days. We are members of a membership campground and are driving there to spend three nights in their Ocean Mist campground at Ocean City, Washington. The weather sounds like it will be good with high temps down there in the upper 60s to low 70s and sunny days, which is about as good as it gets on the northern Washington Coast. I'll take my camera and some books but we are leaving the computers at home. We do have kites to take and look forward to flying them on the beach. I'll try to get some photos posted before too long after we get back home Thursday afternoon, but that night is our Mexican Train game night so it will have to wait at least until Friday.

Some have asked about our cats. They are all fine. Miss Molly goes to the vet tomorrow morning before we leave but it is just for her regular checkup. Peewee is sitting beside me on my computer desk as I type this which will work fine as long as Huggy doesn't come into the computer room. We still have Cat Wars going on but I am almost of the opinion that it has become a bit of play for Huggy and Peewee. Most of the time Molly just ignores Huggie's hissing, looks at her and then walks off. Sometimes we will find them lying on the floor just a couple of feet apart, especially in the sunroom. Once we found all three curled up asleep on our bed. At the same time. They will probably all be ticked off with us for leaving them alone while we are gone but Pat's daughter, C, will come by to feed and scritch (pet) them every day. And we hope she'll also water the plants but her first interest is the cats.

More later.

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Sunday, August 03, 2008


Toads around the house

Pat collects toads. We have quite a few inside the house and of course there are yard toads, too. Here are a few of the yard toads.

Toads 01
This is the Educated Toad, with his diploma, books and moarter board. He is hiding a bit back in the plant that is supposed to be behind him, but I think you can see him.

Toads 02
This is Pat's helper, the Gardener Toad. This lady toad is equipped to do all of the spading, etc. that is necessary but we still seem to end up doing most of that.

Toads 03
This guy is the Greeter Toad who greets our visitors. His station is just outside the front door on the porch. He is kind of brown which is good as he is not out in the rain where he gets washed off.

We will be leaving in about half an hour to go catch a shuttle bus and ride to Seattle's Safeco Field to watch the Seattle Mariner's baseball team loose (probably) to the Baltimore Orioles. I won four tickets to today's game along with four round trips on the shuttle bus in a radio contest! They are for the game today and, even though our team is not having a very good season, we are looking forward to the trip. The weather is supposed to be in the upper 70s this afternoon so it is just about perfect for sitting and watching a game. And I don't have to drive down, try to find parking, and pay for it! I will take the small camera but don't think I'll be able to get much in the way of photos as we will be sitting behind home plate but in the upper nose bleed section. More later.....

PS - Diane, the cats are all fine, still engaging in their Cat Wars.

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