I’ve been in kind of funk lately. Just a combination of being off the road, medical issues and rain rain rain. Yes I know we chose to return from living in sunny Florida to live in the wet Pacific Northwest. Call it a lapse of sanity, but I call it by its real name-FAMILY. While I miss walking on the beach in 85 degree weather vs 45 degree weather, I love having my family close-by and not a long airline flight away. So I try to make the best of it-something I’ve been failing at for the last few months. But it’s time to pick myself up and shake off this funk. What better way to start then to take a mini road trip off the Island to check out the Skagit Valley. It was a gorgeous sunny day so we started with a ferry ride to Mukilteo. So pretty watching the sun slowly burn off the fog.
And I almost missed this beautiful heron-he was hiding out on the pilings next to the ferry and fortunately for me he ducked his head just at the right moment for me to get a decent shot of his feathered beauty. We had decided to head North in search of snow geese and swans. The Skagit Valley is known for an incredible migration of the snow geese and swans from Alaska and Siberia. Skagit Valley is one of their major wintering grounds, and usually more than 50,000 birds stop over between November and early spring. We spotted a few hundred off of Interstate 5 and decided to take the LaConnor exit and head for the back roads. We didn’t have a map with us so we just pointed towards the Skagit River, knowing that it ran through the valley and would probably lead us to the snow geese and swans. And we were right.
We had just pulled off to the side of the road when a huge group of snow geese came in for a landing. The ones that were already on the ground rose up to greet them (my human interpretation ).
I plan on heading back to this area for some sunrise and/or sunset shots of these incredibly beautiful birds. It was another awe-inspiring moment to just stand and watch them from the distance. Their rise and dance in the sky lifted my heart and soul.
While taking the photographs another photographer pointed us in the direction of where we could spot some migrating swans with views of Mount Baker in the background. On our way to that spot along the Skagit River we spotted this bald eagle surveying the area. The eagles also migrate through this area from early December through January. In January there is a Bald Eagle Festival. We missed last years migration but I will be trying to catch the eagles this year. When it’s a good year for salmon (which 2017 wasn’t) you can see hundreds of Bald Eagles in the trees along the river.
And then we came upon the fields of swans. About 10,000 Trumpeter and Tundra swans migrate through the Skagit Valley this time of year. You can find more information here on the Mount Vernon Chamber website.
Our visit to see the snow geese and swans brought back memories of the birds we had seen in Alaska. It made me wonder if any of these feathered creatures were the same ones we had spotted in Alaska-not likely , but I can imagine it, right ?
Good bye my beautiful feathered creatures-until we meet again.
We arrived back on Whidbey just in time to watch a gorgeous sunset over the Olympic Mountains. Seriously, how could anyone not be inspired by this sight ? It made me feel a little guilty that I had wrapped myself up in such a funk, that I had missed the beauty that surrounded me. Oh well, sometimes we need that introspective , block out everything else time, to make us realize how blessed we are. I know I did, and it helped me see how foolish I had been to waste time worrying and being sad when all I had to do was look out my window and thank God for how blessed I am.
Good night sweet friends, safe travels and happy trails. I leave you with this Apache Blessing:
MAY THE SUN BRING YOU NEW ENERGY BY DAY
MAY THE MOON SOFTLY RESTORE YOU BY NIGHT
MAY THE RAIN WASH AWAY YOUR WORRIES
MAY THE BREEZE BLOW NEW STRENGTH
INTO YOUR BEING
MAY YOU WALK GENTLY THROUGH
THE WORLD AND KNOW ITS BEAUTY
ALL THE DAYS OF YOUR LIFE.