Thursday, March 25, 2010

Tolowa Dunes State Park

Yesterday I failed to mention that we have now moved to Crescent City, about ten miles outside of the Oregon border. I saw an interesting sign today: "Captivating Crescent City..permanently eye candy". It was advertising a beauty salon- somebody was being creative! We started our day today hearing the tsunami alarm- just a practice drill for the area. The drill was the first for Crescent City, apparently what happened in Chili got someone thinking that it would be necessary to have an alarm here. This city did have a tsunami in 1964. It was a cool windy, and overcast day today but we decided to drive to Tolowa Lake State Park for a hike on the dunes. That was an interesting walk- part of it was through a marshy area and some of it was  in a forested area covered with moss, ferns.  Just the right area to see orchids!  The flowers we saw were quite small (I have enlarged the one pictured here). We almost missed seeing it, thinking it was a violet. What a exquisite flower.
I found the orchids and John saw a banana slug crawling across our forest path. I don't believe that I have seen one before. It does look like a small banana, what a fascinating creature.
 And does anyone know what is killing the trees of northern California? It looks like a type of moss and seems to be doing as much damage as the kudzu vine in our southeastern states.
After walking the dunes along the coast we headed out to an estuary at Lake Tolowa. We did not see as many birds as we had hoped to see, maybe that was due to the time of day. There were a couple of hawks hovering in the sky, different ducks in the water and one lone egret.  Our hike here required climbing over piles of driftwood.  It was interesting to see a lake sitting that close to an ocean with only a narrow strip of beach separating the two.

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