Friday, April 19, 2024


Robbery in Progress

So tempting!

[Click on images for larger view]


My neighbors recently hung a bird feeder in one of their trees. The tree is located close to a wall which provides reasonably good access for critters other than birds. I happened to spot this squirrel at work one afternoon when I did not have my camera with me. I hurried inside to get my camera and was actually surprised she/he was still at work when I captured the shots above. Isn't this an interesting and amusing aspect of nature? I checked back a couple hours later and about 1/2 of the seeds, you can see in the pictures, were gone. 😊 I do have to admit, perhaps "looting" may be a more accurate title.

Linking up with Saturday's Critters. Eileen has some amazing photos on her post this week. 

Skywatch Friday - A few recent skies

I posted this photo in my March 5th post to express
my delight in learning that the rosy light on the
mountains, I was observing, is called alpenglow.
One of my blogging friends, Soma, commented:
"That's your view?!! Breathtakingly beautiful."
Thank you, Soma, for the kind words.
Yes, it's my view ... but, of course, I was zoomed in quite a bit.
The next photo is a zoomed out look.
My view is looking west over Puget Sound to
Bainbridge Island, and in the distance,
the Olympic Mountains.

Just after sunset on March 14, 2024.

Looking more to the southwest, in the far distance, the 
southern end of the Olympic Mountain Range. On
this day, April 5th, clear skies existed in the far 
distance and in an unusual way highlighted the rain
falling from closer storm clouds.
The little yellow star, on the left, is above something that
appears to be a submarine. Actually, it is just an outcropping
of rocks, known as Blakely Rock 

This is one of those scenes where, when you see it, you've
got to quickly find the camera. You can capture some of
the beauty here with a smartphone camera, but really, an optical
zoom is the way to go.  April 9th.

Tulip Festival

Yes, the Tulip Festival is going on in the Skagit Valley
about an hour or so north of Seattle. It's definitely worth
a drive up to see it in person ... check out the photos 
in the link. My photo above is like a tiny bouquet
of tulips near the entrance to my driveway. It's fun
to keep an eye on these little plants as they open up 
in spring.

One of my long-time blogging friends, DJan, posted
this image on her blog, Eye on the Edge, on
April 23, 2017. She lives not too far from the
Tulip Festival and attends almost every year.
Yes, she did give me permission to post her photo,
and thank you DJan!  😊
She posted about her visit to the Festival
this year with more excellent images.

Cottonwood Tree Update

Last year I planted cottonwood tree seeds.
See my post last year for the details.
Over the winter, the tree lost all leaves, and
at times, appeared dead. The next image
shows how it looks this year, with new
leaves and in good condition.

Here is my Cottonwood Tree about one year
after I planted the seed.
I know this sounds funny, but I, for one,
am AMAZED.  😊

Randoms - Just a few random shots ...

Fully loaded freighter heading out to the Pacific Ocean.
Evergreen Marine Corp. has a slogan
Nature Above All

A different EVERGREEN ship on a clear day,
headed northbound to the Pacific. In the distance,
the Olympic Mountains.

     Looking up ...

I'm keeping an eye on this nest in a tree along
my waterfront walk. So far, no birds have returned
this year. I am curious about birds returning to 
nests over and over. I know Eagles do.

I just had to get the deep blue sky
above my neighbor's Apple tree,
which is currently loaded with
red/pink blooms.

Closing thought ...

"Every flower of every tomorrow are in the seeds of today."
       Virgil   (Ancient Roman poet of the Augustan period.)

Thanks, as always, for stopping by.

Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Sea Birds

Sea Birds Spotted

Last weekend I spotted a couple of "sea birds" on my waterfront walk. I thought my birding friends would enjoy seeing these big birds.

View of Elliott Bay, Seattle, at the start of
April 7th waterfront walk. A yellow star is right above
the sea bird. Closer look in the next picture.

Yes, it's the Sea Bird.
A different kind of bird at that. 😊
The Sea Bird is a bulk carrier
loading up with grain, at the
Terminal 86 Grain Facility, probably
destined for Asia.

And yet another bird ... The Northern Eagle
A fishing vessel preparing for the 2024
fishing season in Alaskan waters.

Each year I try to include a shot of the
first cruise ship of the season to visit
the Port of Seattle. The 
Norwegian Bliss takes the honors
this year. In this photo she is
departing, April 7th, a little after 4PM,
en route to Juneau, Alaska.

Thanks for stopping by. 

Monday, April 8, 2024

Total Solar Eclipse

Today is the day.

The yellow line is the path of totality.
Credit to New York Times for the map above
and the one below.

The New York Times

How to watch with NASA

Thanks for stopping by.

Comments will return on the next post.

Saturday, April 6, 2024

Gateway - 1903

Gateway to Yellowstone

 Story of the Arch

(Mostly told with Postcards)

Very early card showing one way to tour the Park ...
horse-drawn carriage.
[Click on images for enlarged view!]

The stagecoach was the most common way
to tour in the early days.

Most tourists arrived via train. The depot was just outside the
lava rock entrance. The Northern Pacific Railroad served this station.

This card shows a train stopped at the station.
The cards are about evenly split on showing a train or not.
As a "railfan" I appreciate the ones WITH trains more!

Different and unusual style
for an early postcard.

This station was famous for its western theme.
Especially the logs holding up the roof covering the platform.

In some years there was a pond
between the depot and the arch.

The pond looks well manicured in this view.

Photographers tried to get creative
shooting right above the pond.

Reflection of the arch in the pond.

Good early view - front of the arch.
Words above the archway:
"For the benefit and enjoyment of the people."

In this view a carriage has just 
passed under the arch heading
into the Park.
Sender of the card dated it June 24, 1905
About 2 years after dedication.

Color applied to black and white photo.
Love horses? Yes, we do too, 
and other critters as well, 
so we're linking up with

"Wylie" Coaches entering the Park
Wylie Camping Co would take you for the full tour
including overnights in their camps.

Back of the Wylie card.
Note: Knights of Columbus from San Francisco probably used
this card to enlist members to attend the "Pilgrimage"
to Yellowstone July 6 to 20, 1912
1 cent domestic
2 cents foreign 

The first automobile entered the Park in 1915.
This card does not reveal a publication date.

Pretty nice car and I have to wonder
if it was artistically added to the image?
 (Same for the card above.)

This card is called a "real photo" card because
it is an individual photograph with printing
on the back for postal delivery.

A rare photo showing
a fence inside the arch.

(Colorful but artistically modified.)
Note Mother's comments ...
The "other end" may be the South entrance
which connects to Teton National Park.

Unusual card showing guard house just inside the gate.
The guard house is no longer there and it existed only for
a short time.

A more modern postcard view.

A more modern "real photo" card.
(That is, if we can call 2nd half
of last century "modern".)

Probably the "most recent" published
card among all those
in this post.

Artistry at work.
Gustav Krollmann was the artist for this card and
the one below. He titled this card,
Gardiner Gateway to Yellowstone Park
(There are 6 Gateways)

Lots of "artistic license"
in this view.

The rare aerial view.
Yes, the arch is in there ...
near right edge about 1/3rd
way up from bottom.

President Theodore Roosevelt standing on the partially
constructed arch for the dedication ceremony and laying of
the cornerstone on April 24, 1903.
(Not a postcard, but a stereoview. I haven't found a
postcard showing this scene, but it may exist.)
My photo of the Cornerstone

My photo of the arch from a trip several years ago.

Another of my photos -- a different trip.
This view is looking toward
Shooting Star Mountain.
When I put together my love for Yellowstone National Park and my hobby of collecting vintage postcards I became fascinated with the number and variety of postcards featuring the Roosevelt Entrance Arch. This may seem peculiar since Yellowstone is all about natural wonders and the Arch is a human construction. However, the Arch has become the symbol of the Park and that spurred my interest. Yellowstone Park was created by an Act of Congress in 1872, but the Arch was not constructed until 1903. On April 24, 1903, President Theodore Roosevelt dedicated the arch as its cornerstone was laid. My collection of arch cards totals over 100, each with some difference.

Thanks for stopping by.


Robbery in Progress So tempting! [Click on images for larger view] Yummm! My neighbors recently hung a bird feeder in one of their trees. Th...