Trail Day: Nisqually

I don’t know that I consider Nisqually a “trail”.  Or a hike, for that matter.  More of a walk.  A mosey.  An opportunity to listen to birds and breath fresh air.  And if the tide is in?  Even better.  NYD morning the tide was in.  Hugely in.  But, I also knew that the masses would be descending upon one of my favorite places by 10 am.  Who can blame them?  So, at 7:30, at the husband and I lay in bed, I announced that I was going to Nisqually.  He said, “Okay.”  It’s one of my favorites.  He gets bored by “the same” scenery.  I forgive him for that misstatement (Nisqually is always different) and left him percolating a pot of coffee.  Everyone had a happy morning.

I was in the parking lot a little after 8.  There were about as many cars.  I had hoped for less, but it’s a big property, I can dodge people.  I strapped on my ever-present camera and set out.

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I have to confess that I didn’t listen to the birds.  I was plugged in.  I’m currently listening to Erin Morgenstern’s The Starless Sea on Audible.  I’m not usually a fantasy-type reader (listener), but I loved The Night Circus.  I wasn’t sure about The Starless Sea when I first started listening to it, but it has completely sucked me in.  I listened to it the entire time I was out at Nisqually, then came home and listened while I took down the Christmas tree. It’s a long listen…18 1/2 hours.  I have eight hours left and may cry a little when it’s over.  I may have to read The Night Circus again as comfort.  Hopefully Erin will not wait another eight years before producing another gem.

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I decided to do the whole loop at Nisqually, which is a little over four miles.  It was a beautiful morning, I had no where to be and the only thing waiting for me at home was a large Christmas tree that needed to be taken down.  I wasn’t in a hurry to rush home to that.

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The most difficult decision was if I should start on the boardwalk in the forest or head out to the boardwalk over the delta.  I decided to start with the delta for two reasons:  1. the tide was almost at it’s highest point, which always gives me a sensation of walking on water when on the boardwalk, and 2. the weather wasn’t quite clear.  There were some dark clouds still swirling about and I hoped for some gorgeous skies as the grey mixed with the blue promising to pop out. I was not disappointed.

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I kept my eyes open for eagles and other magnificent creatures.  There were eagles on distant trees, but I always forget to bring binoculars.  I always tell myself, “Next time,” and next time arrives with no binoculars.  I passed a few fellow photographers with serious lenses (gigantic things intended to catch the tiniest feather on the breast of a duck), nodding in greeting.  I’m sure they wonder who the doofus is with but a landscape lens out at Nisqually.  I did have my 70-200 in my pack, but it’s got nothing on the power they’re packing.  The power would be fun, the packing would not.

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I reached the point where you must turn around this time of year as the very end of the boardwalk is closed due to bird hunting in the area.  Which is a bit ironic because I think you could end up with a hiney full of birdshot on much of the boardwalk this time of year.  I watched a camouflaged boat (which I couldn’t see because it was camouflaged) drift on the far side of the river and heard blammo-blammo-blammo-blammo-blammo-blammo, but saw no birds fall from the sky.  When the enthusiastic gunfire started again I decided turning back might be a wise decision, particularly since I found myself questioning their accuracy.

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The masses were descending upon the refuge as I reached the end of the boardwalk over the estuary.  Hoards of families with children, eager to stretch their legs in the new year, were marching towards me like ants.  I ducked past them for the refuge of the boardwalk in the forest, which is always much more lightly traveled than that over the estuary.  I finished my loop under sunny skies, energized and ready to tackle that tree.


2 thoughts on “Trail Day: Nisqually

    1. Isn’t he/she a beauty? Usually I shoot them from the side, but I couldn’t resist the head-on perspective. You should consult the tide tables and….actually, that should be our next adventure.

      Liked by 1 person

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