Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Postcard from the Pacific North-West: 1

Surf Scoters complete the spectacular view from 4th of July beach on San Juan Island, Washington State. In the background is the imposing 10,781-ft Mount Baker, some 60 miles to the north-west in the Cascade Mountains on the mainland.
 As much as I love blogging about birds, there are times when it has to take a back seat - times like holidays with the family. We spent the second half of July and early August in the Pacific North-West, mainly in Washington State but with a final stop-over just inside Oregon. I visited this part of the world 10 years when co-leading a Birdwatch reader holiday, and also spent a fortnight just across the Canadian border one autumn, so it was good to be back and also take in a few new locations as well. While it wasn't possible to blog on the road, birds did feature - how could they not? Even just soaking in spectacular vistas like the one above, birds were a perennial part of the backdrop. I'll post a little on the trip in the coming days, once I return from the British Birdwatching Fair, but in the meantime, here's a taster - one of the more special species we encountered along the way:

Grey Jay in the Hoh Rainforest, Olympic National Park - this inquisitive northern species has a habit of coming after your food!


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