widening rings

Unknown Fancies

February 27, 2011


With the wings of the birds, my spirit joyfully flies over unknown fancies everywhere.

Paramahansa Yogananda

I'm headed to Washington today! We're spending a week on Vashon Island — hoping to find some cool wildlife, eat some good food and explore lots of new places. We'll be traveling via the Coast Starlight train and I'm looking forward to being able to watch the landscape shift and change as we make our way northward. If all goes well, I'll try and share a few pics and stories from my travels while I'm away...

Meanwhile, I was inspired on my last couple of walks through the canyon to capture some images of birds flying away from their perch. (I'm such a sucker for metaphor!) Be sure to click on the images to see a close-up of the bird on the wing!

Northern Flicker

Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)

Cassin's Kingbirds

Cassin's Kingbirds (Tyrannus vociferans)
*Look closely at the clickable larger image —
Just in front of the bird, you can actually see the insect it's about to nab. How awesome is that?!*

American Kestrel

American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)

Acorn Woodpecker

Acorn Woodpecker (Melanerpes formicivorus)
*Notice the acorn in its bill — they cache them in all the telephone poles around our place... and in the trees... and in pretty much any other place that looks like it will fit an acorn nicely. :-)*

 

8 responses

  • Ro Feb 27, 2011 at 9:58 AM

    Have a wonderful trip Harsi, it's always fun to fly the coop!

    I love all your pictures and I'm a sucker too for birds in flight.

    ENJOY!
  • Chris Feb 27, 2011 at 5:11 PM

    Hey Harsi; as you mentioned earlier, looks like you'll be up for a cold, wet one up there, but I hope you guys enjoy yourselves and I look forward to hearing more about your travels :)
  • Harsi Feb 27, 2011 at 10:36 PM

    Thanks for the good wishes, Chris! I spent most of the day glued to the window of the train and saw some gorgeous scenery -- especially along the Santa Barbara coastline. Trying to ID birds while zipping past is a bit challenging, but still fun. (Best sighting so far was a Belted Kingfisher!) Currently, we're passing through San Jose and the weather thus far has been nothing but clear skies and (earlier) sunshine. But, yes, I assume that will change rather drastically as we move further north.
  • Harsi Feb 27, 2011 at 10:54 PM

    Hi, Ro!! I'm having a great time so far and I have taken waaaaaay to many photos. I need to download them and see if there are a few good ones worth sharing. A lot of the time I was just wishing that the train would stop for even a few minutes so I could really take in everything I was seeing... Unlike my meandering walks where I can stop to look at every little thing I love, this is more of a whirlwind tour -- but one with some very beautiful moments.
  • Ro Mar 1, 2011 at 5:49 PM

    Wah hooooo chu chu chu!!! Can't wait to see your pictures, ENJOY!!!!

    xo
  • Harsi Mar 1, 2011 at 11:37 PM

    ~ Ro (and anyone else who might be curious) ~

    I was impressed by the scenery from the train on the first day of our travels, but on the second day we saw some truly mind-blowing parts of Oregon & Washington. So much snow in the mountain ranges, two new birds species we'd never seen before, and some crazy cloud formations. I kept thinking that I would stop to put together a blog update, but I was too afraid I would miss something good out the window. *grin* We arrived on Vashon island today and are thoroughly enjoying it thus far! Perhaps a bit too much, because I've barely been on the computer at all, much less put together a new post. BUT, not to worry, I am taking lots of photos and will definitely share them, even if it turns out to be a bit more of a retrospective than a real-time update!
  • Chris Mar 2, 2011 at 12:15 PM

    Certainly can't blame you for that Harsi; afterall your time there is limited so you have to make the best of it while you're up there! Glad you're enjoying yourself so far, you can always catch up with us at a later time :)
  • Harsi Mar 2, 2011 at 9:35 PM

    Thanks for being so understanding, Chris! :-) I'm feeling a bit guilty about not having posted anything, but I think you're right -- the most important thing is to really try to live in the moment and make the most of my experiences while I'm here.

    So, what surprises did today hold? Rainbows in the morning, followed by high winds and a temporary power outage. Lots of good food and friendly people! A long walk through beautiful moss and lichen covered forested areas. Our first time EVER seeing several new species birds... most notably -- the superbly magnificent Pileated Woodpecker! Can't wait to share more when the time comes...

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