Monday, January 04, 2016

On The First Day Of 2016

We woke to a beautiful clear blue sky. It was bone-chilling cold with temps at hard freeze levels, but we knew we wanted to start the year with a nice long walk. We first headed out early into the neighborhood and saw more robins than we'd ever seen before. They were everywhere, in every field, on rooftops, and in the trees. I thought to myself, "How cool, robins! Now there is a lovely auspicious sign for the beginning of the year. It's all about ME!" Hah! I tried to photograph them, but big fields of little birds just don't present the most photographable moment. Oh well.
Google Earth View of the Jetties
So we headed home for a late breakfast. We had walked a little more than two miles, but it was still such a beautiful day, I said to Roger, "Lets go see the ocean today." He was delighted with the idea and said, "What do you think about exploring the North Jetty?" Oh yes! He checked google maps, and found which little road to turn on. He had been to the North Jetty only once before (maybe 1976), and I had never been there. So, we headed out. It's only a fifteen minute drive from here, but truly a world away.

Here is what Wikipedia says about the North and South Jetties where Humboldt Bay meets the ocean:
The unimproved state of the mouth of the bay was a crescent-shaped bar covered by a line of breaking waves.[15] The entrance of the bay is protected by two sand spits, named South Spit and North Spit. The bay mouth was stabilized by jetties with one jetty projecting from each spit.[4] The South Spit jetty was built starting in 1889, but by 1890 it was apparent that it was eroding the North Spit and widening the channel.[16] The jetties are approximately 6,000 feet (1,800 m) long and 2,200 feet (670 m) apart.[4] Storm damage led to rebuilding of the jetties in 1911, 1927, 1932, 1939, 1950, 1957, 1963, 1971, 1988 and 1995.[16] Entrance currents are strong ranging from 2.0 knots average maximum ebb and 1.6 knots average maximum flood; although peak rates can be nearly twice as high.[4]
It is quite a walk from the sandy dune parking to the end of the jetty. Each step has to be taken with forethought. It is slippery; it is variously full of eroded wood, cement, and rock; it is full of holes big enough to fall into up to your knees or deep enough to fall in over your head. There are no soft surfaces anywhere. I was paying attention, but the waves kept pulling my eyes in their direction. We were walking far out into the ocean (2000 feet out) and had a stunning view of the breaking waves.

I had never seen such interesting sprays, flowing back off the crest like that.
 Wave after wave, rolling to the shore.

It's a slow, laborious walk to the end of the jetty. I made it even slower stopping every few minutes to be wowed by another wave.
And then, I noticed the rainbows.
They were frustratingly hard to capture.
In fact, I didn't think I had gotten a single shot.
But, as it turns out, I did. There were some rainbows in the sprays that were truly magnificent. We gasped out loud at their beauty.
And then they were gone in an instant.

So, that's how we spent the first day of the new year. We hope yours was as wonderful and full of beauty.


  1. Is anything more hypnotic than watching waves crash in? I'd have been there a long time with my camera, I think. An excellent start to your year - may it continue as prettily and peacefully.

  2. Awesome views from the Jetty. Glad you had a nice day it rained in the UK and was still doing so yesterday. Happy New Year

  3. Wow, that really was a challenging walk on the jetty but sooo worth it. Glad you made the trip safely and that the reward of those waves was so great.

  4. I don't suppose you saw stick robin among all of those robins?

  5. John-- That's the word that describes it, hypnotic. I hope your new year started out as prettily and peacefully as well.

    Bill-- So glad you liked the photos. Hope you get some sunshine there. We're back to gloomy rainy days here. Happy New Year!

    Arkansas Patti-- It was quite an adventure on those rocks, but so incredibly worth it. I forgot to mention that this is not safe at high tide, and we lucked out that our trip coincided with the lowest tide of the day. Wonderful to see you back here. I've missed you!

    Pablo-- Ah, so lovely that you remember stick robin. I think of him often. He was quite the survivor.

  6. you are the intrepid duo. ever in pursuit of those peak experiences. And we, lucky readers, get to see your fabulous photos! I'm glad you had such a stellar day.

  7. Tara-- It really is quite a trek out to the end of that jetty. Definitely nerve-wracking and only do-able at a low tide. I can't wait to go back. LOL! Really glad you liked the photos.

  8. Amazing. You started out in bone-chilling cold and walked toward the jetty and open ocean. Gorgeous photographs but I'm sure you were numb by the time you came back inside. We appreciate your treacherous journey to get the amazing photographs.

  9. NCmountainwoman-- We were pretty lucky that it was a sunny and wind-less day. The temps warmed up into the 40s when were out on the jetty. A wind would have made the walk impossible for us. It is a tricky walk, and we were so glad we took it. So glad you liked the photos.

  10. Wow! Thank you. Have never been to the North Jetty. Thank you for an adventure. I love seeing the waves from that perspective. Love what the offshore winds do to the tops of the waves. I've seen that waves from that perspective at from Gualala Point State Park.

    Found this:

  11. Ha! I meant that I've seen waves from that perspective at Gualala Point Regional Park:

  12. am-- Thank you so much for the link to the video. Wow. It is spectacular and really captures the walk out to the end of the jetty. It's spectacular. I've never explored the Gualala area, but you definitely make me want to. If I had a bucket list, it would be on it. Thank you!

  13. isabelita-- Love this. I hadn't thought of the word "swell" like this. Wonderful!