Saturday, 13 January 2007

Back to Port Aransas

Here are the photos from yesterday. I think it's a problem with Firefox as I had no problem uploading them in Internet Explorer.

This is a photo of Aransas Bay that I took on my morning walk

This is a Black Skimmer that I photographed at the beach at Port Aransas

This is a flock of Black Skimmers at Port Aransas Beach

This is my favourite Great Blue Heron at Roberts Point Park - see his head feathers blowing int he wind - he looks like Dennis the Menace

Did you know this was National Lurker week? So those of you that have been lurking are supposed to leave comments. So I look forward to about 100 comments today as that seems to be approximately how many people are coming to my site daily. I thought I might get some comments yesterday asking me why I call our beach Stinky Beach but I guess no one is curious!

It was 70F (21C) this morning and partly cloudy as I took my walk along the beach. There wasn’t much going on this morning but the bird club were at the fishing pier with their cameras and binoculars. With my little camera all I could see was the usual little snowy egret and a sandpiper but they seemed to have their eyes and equipment trained far away. I didn’t stick around but continued walking. I saw an Ontario license plate on a little Roadtrek and a Titanium from Minnesota but other than that mostly people from Texas.

We left this morning headed for Port Aransas but on the way checked out some RV Parks. There is one very near here that the price is right but doesn’t have many other redeeming qualities at least for a month’s stay. We saw another one in Rockport that was nice and on the water but had no room until March so we’ll keep looking.

As we were both hungry we stopped at Fins in Port Aransas again. I was thinking I’d have another bowl of seafood gumbo but he only makes it when it’s cold so I wound up with an oyster and shrimp po’ boy which is a hoagie. It was good but I really wanted seafood gumbo! Then we stopped at Marina Beach to pick up the mail that my sister had sent me and hadn’t arrived when we left so now I have some photos of Christmas. Then we did our usual rounds of the south jetty, the beach and Roberts Point Park before heading home.

We had some shower squalls on and off all day but reached a temperature of 75F (24C) when we were coming through Aransas Pass. Just after we got home it started to rain and thunder.

When we got back this afternoon there was a note taped to the door inviting us to a presentation at the rec hall on the Aransas Bay Estuary System. We decided to go just for something different to do. There was quite a turnout but the chairs were uncomfortable and the guy wasn’t a great speaker but it was better than watching a rerun of Law & Order!

Unfortunately blogger won't let me upload photos tonight. I'll try again later!

Friday, 12 January 2007

An Interlude in Rockport

  • A couple of the Rockport fishing fleet
  • A reddish egret (with the reddish neck)
  • A great blue heron (on the post) - he's the one that stayed with us at lunch
  • A long billed curlew (on the sand)

This morning was 65F (18C) and cloudy for my walk along the bayfront down to the fishing pier. It was a nice walk except for walking by Stinky Beach which is the actual name of the beach here. You don’t swim there!

I sat outside to read for a while but it was quite cool in the wind. It was okay when I moved to the other side of the RV but then I got a craving for an Asian salad at McDonalds so we went into Rockport and each got our lunches (Gordon’s from Taco Bell) and we got a picnic table on the water. We were lucky enough to have a Great Blue Heron stay with us while we were eating. While we were there we also looked around the area at some birds and found quite a few so I think we’ll be spending the rest of January and most of February in Rockport.

I noticed the temperature gauge in the truck while we were in Rockport – 75F (24C) and quite humid.

After lunch, I went to the little shopping mall. It’s not much but the Bealle’s store is quite nice. I bought some stuff there when we were here in winter 2005. Apparently we had a little rain shower while I was inside. Then we stopped for groceries at WalMart and I wound up having to stop at HEB as well as WalMart didn’t have turnips and with the cold weather coming this weekend, I want to make more stew!

I sat out and read again when we got home but it was quite cloudy and windy so didn’t stay out long.

Now we're in for a night of TV!

Thursday, 11 January 2007

Big Tree

This is the road to Big Tree - pretty live oak trees

This morning was mostly cloudy and 62F (17C) as I set out on my walk. Fortunately I had taken my sunglasses as the sun came out shortly after I set out. I again walked in the ‘Oaks’ part of the campground going farther this time so the walk took 45 minutes and might have been a bit too far as my lower back was complaining. I didn’t see much of interest this morning except the different ways the oak trees grow here, no deer, no herons but I did see a trail that I’d like to take but will have to bring binoculars with me.

Later in the morning we went to see Big Tree. It is more than 35 feet in circumference, 44 feet high and a crown spread of 89 feet and is supposed to be over 1000 years old. My camera couldn’t get the whole tree in a photo so I took a photo of its base as you will see below. Then we drove around some of the side roads in the area to see what we could see returning home for lunch.

I read this afternoon and had a long nap. It was cloudy outside so only sat out for a bit this morning. Just before sunset we went for a walk along the water and over to the boat dock where the pelicans were again gathered looking for handouts.

Wednesday, 10 January 2007

The Silence is Deafening

I slept a bit later again this morning. I had put the electric blanket back on the bed a couple of nights ago and it was just so warm and cozy that I didn’t want to get up even though I was awake. When I did get up, I realized it wasn’t as cold as I thought – 55F (13C) and partly sunny. I set out for my walk. It’s always interesting coming to a new place and walking around. There are two parts to this campground – the waterfront and the oaks. So I walked toward the oaks and on the way saw a great blue heron sitting in the top of a tree. It was pretty walking in the live oaks area. They are an interesting tree. Their branches are often as big as the original tree trunk and due to their weight often grow along the ground. On my way back, I saw two mule deer standing quite a distance off the road but as a truck went by they scampered away. There were quite a few egrets and some other birds that looked heron related but were too far away and my binoculars were in the truck. When I walk I have my phone, my camera and my radio so I don’t really want to add binoculars to the list but here I might make an exception!

I sat outside and read for about four hours today. The sun was warm but the breeze was cool so I had my afghan with me and that made it cozy. I even ate my lunch out there. I went for another walk this afternoon and found that they have a book exchange at the rec hall. Its only open a couple of days a week but I’ll have to check it out as I just finished another book.

There were guys cleaning their fish at the boat dock and a whole flock of pelicans were waiting for handouts. They really are moochers! Photo below.

This is the view from my lawnchair

This is the waterfront part of the campground

This is the live oak trees part of the campground

These are the mule deer that I saw on my morning walk

This tree reminded me of the divi divi trees that you see in Aruba

The rest of the day passed uneventfully. We got a new neighbour this afternoon and now their hind end faces our living room window but that’s the way it goes!

It really is quiet here at night, quite different from being in town.

Tuesday, 9 January 2007

Now at Goose Island State Park in Texas

This is me relaxing in our 'back yard'

This is the view from the front of the RV

The following two photos are our site. Behind us is Aransas Bay

We made the short trek from Port Aransas to Goose Island State Park via the ferry which was an interesting experience. There was a large diesel pusher (motorhome) as well so they put us on opposite sides of the wheelhouse for balance and managed to get 4 cars on as well behind us. It was definitely a shorter trip that way – 27.8 miles compared to 80.6 going through Corpus Christi. We got to Goose Island State Park a little before 11:00 a.m. and got booked into our site backing on Aransas Bay as we wanted. We’re lucky we got here when we did as the place is filled up now.

We got set up and then went for a bike ride along the bay and took some photos of the birds. There are the usual pelicans, some egrets, white ibis and sandpipers along with a blue heron or two.

I didn’t get my walk this morning as we wanted to get here early to be able to get a good spot. They won’t reserve a particular spot for you until you arrive but they were able to hold us one backing on the water, just not a particular site.

We’re here for two weeks and from here, who knows!

Monday, 8 January 2007

More Photos

I love palm trees!

Pelican trying to digest his catch

Tonight's sunset

Our Last Day in Port A

It was 48F (9C), sunny and windy for my last morning walk to Roberts Point Park, at least for this trip. There wasn’t much in the way of bird or mammal life around due to the windy conditions.

After breakfast and showers we took a drive toward Padre Island as their was a stand of palm trees that we wanted to photograph as it looked so much like an oasis (however since this isn’t a desert, I guess it’s not). It’s on private property so we had to photograph it from the road. We also went to the Leonabelle Turnbull Birding Center and even it was fairly quiet but had lots of ducks, 1 pelican, 1 great blue heron, some scavengers and quite a few black-necked stilts but no butterflies today. We could see a couple of roseate spoonbills in the distance but they never come close enough to get decent photos.

These are the black-necked stilts

Here's the oasis on Mustang Island

After we returned home, I sat outside in the sun where it was really nice even though it only reached 61F (16C) as the wind had died down from what it was this morning.

We thought about going on the dolphin/lighthouse cruise this evening but decided it was too cool. That will be something to do next time we’re here.

Just before sunset, we took a tour of our favourite places - The pier, the beach, the south jetty, one of the piers in town and Charlie's pasture for sunset photos. At one of the piers a fisherman was feeding fish to the pelicans. They were almost too big to get down but that didn't stop one of them from trying.

Oh and, Happy Birthday Elvis!

Sunday, 7 January 2007

Not Much to Report

I slept a little later again this morning. One of those mornings again where I didn’t want to get out of bed. It was 53F (12C) and the skies were cloudy for my walk again to Roberts Point Park. There were a few birds about this morning and the little egret was in a different place. I also photographed a couple of cats that live and work in the boatyard on the fishing boats (see below). There are a few more. I saw about six of them on Christmas Day when no one else was around.

A pelican flew right over my head this morning

A little tern diving for his food

As I was crossing the road, a pickup truck pulled out of one of the deep sea fishing places with a man sitting on the tailgate and three huge fish in the bed of the truck. I’m not sure what they were but the three of them took up the pickup bed area and the tailgate was down. When I reached the Deep Sea Fishing building there was a lady there getting her fish (looked like the same kind) cleaned and cut up. Wish I had had the nerve to ask if I could take a photo of it but I didn’t ask.

While I’m eating breakfast I always take computer time so after that I settled down to read again. I’ve read a lot of books in the last few weeks. Luckily there is a pretty good exchange library here so I’ve taken advantage of it. I’ll miss it when we move to the State Park this week. I tried sitting outside for a while but although the sun had come out it was pretty chilly. This afternoon the temperature did reach 67F (19C) but with the breeze it felt cooler.

My older sister called this morning and we had a chat. They are going to be in Fort Myers for February and March. We’re hoping to find a spot in Fort Myers for the month of March so we can have a visit there.

I made Chicken Cacciatore this afternoon. We haven’t had that for a while and it will last for a couple of days as I made a fair bit.

Looking forward to the new season opener of Desperate Housewives tonight!