The sun pulled us to the shore. It doesn't take that long to walk from North Beach to the lighthouse. It's a beautiful walk from there up the mountain to the upper trail, and then across Fort Worden back to North Beach. A couple of miles of the most splendid quiet space this side of nowhere. I think we passed three other people on the whole journey, in a place as splendid as a mini Golden Gate Park. (Always click on a picture for a larger version.)
The pirate's story:
it seemed to me that the sound came from well above ground level. my fleeting thought was of a hawk and prey. we both turned and stared intently in the direction of the terrible noise, and i had not seen anything move, so i kept my eyes and attention in that direction and moved slowly off the main trail sideways. if i expected anything, it would be a glimpse of a bird of prey with a large kill. the sound had stopped so suddenly that i didn't consider a wounded animal. scanning the area where i sensed the sound had come from, and looking a bit above my estimated location of source, i saw a pair of bald eagles in the top of a tree. maybe less than a hundred feet away and sixty feet up. they are big! and they project attitude that puts a cat to shame.
We stood for a long time and watched them. They watched everything else. It was very quiet.