Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Bob Straub Hike

On Sunday, Sarah, Andie, and I hiked the length of Bob Straub State Park.

Bob Straub is a sandy, cleaver-shaped peninsula, also known as a spit, wedged between Nestucca Bay and the Pacific Ocean. Sarah and I were married on the ocean side two years ago, and we count dead birds there every month, but we had never walked to the end of the spit to see where the bay and ocean meet.

We started on the ocean side, with nice weather and great views. Soon, we spotted a big gray cloud that we thought would pass us by. Intead, it parked over our heads and dumped rain on us for the last mile of beach walking.

We did not pack rain jackets, so we were pretty much soaked by the time we reached the mouth of the bay. It was too wet to take pictures of the mouth, but it was a pretty site. At low tide the water of the bay gets flushed through a narrow passage squeezed against basaltic cliffs. During incoming tides, the water passes in the opposite direction.

As we turned the corner and walked along the bay, the sun returned and started to dry us out.

After passing a few crab boats and picnicers, we had the bay to ourselves. We spotted a small flock of semipalmated sandpipers, a red-necked phalarope, and the first mew gulls of the year mixed in with western and California gulls.

We tried to get Andie into the bay, but she was soaked enough from the rain and did not care for a swim.

We turned inland from the bay and continued to hike through another spectacular part of the park. More on that later.

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