after the storm

Black Oystercatchers (Haematopus bachmani)

*More photos from my October trip to California and Oregon.

There are just a few of the photos which I took on the morning after a day of stormwatching near Crescent City, California back in October. My friend and I spent much of that day wandering on several beaches, studying and photographing objects that had been tossed ashore by the wild waves. We found the remains of dead seabirds and a sea lion, along with bits and pieces of crabs, clam, oysters and fish. The Black Oystercatchers (Haematopus bachmani) and various species of gulls seemed busy as they poked between rocks and patrolled sandy beaches.

All of these smaller photos are linked to larger views — some actually quite large as I thought there might be others who enjoy studying such things as much as I do.

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17 Responses to “after the storm”

  1. am Says:

    Hi Bev. Have missed your posts. Love these glimpses of the northernmost coast of California!

    In one of the photos is a type of seaweed with little bulbs attached. When that seaweed is dry and is thrown into a beach campfire, the bulbs explode and make a series of “pops” like subdued firecrackers. I learned that as a teenager, growing up near Half Moon Bay in California. Haven’t thought about that for a long time.

  2. Dave Says:

    Skull of a seabird
    washed up before the sea was half-
    finished with it.

  3. pohanginapete Says:

    Storms, birds, the sea. Some of the most wonderful things in life. Looking at your photos, Bev, I can almost smell the sea; taste it on my lips. I saw oystercatcher chicks for the first time a couple of weeks ago, and understood how much I need things like this in my life.

    Nice comment, Dave. (The skull of a tern, perhaps?)

  4. Sarah Says:

    I used to live in Crescent City. Its amazing what washes up on those beaches after a storm. These photos are really lovely.

    I’m new to reading your blog and have added it to my blog roll. Its a nice to meet you and I look forward to reading more.


  5. robin andrea Says:

    Such beautiful views of the beach, bev. We walk out everyday now and take a look around to see what the surf has deposited on the sand. The treasures are always there, in colors and textures like these. I’ve only seen an oystercatcher once and that was in Port Townsend.

    Nice to have you back. I’ve missed you.

  6. Leslie Says:

    I like the variety of colors in the pebbles. I had the opportunity to visit the west coast a few years ago, and I kept picking up one colorful rock after another. My pockets got full long before I was ready to leave the pebbles undisturbed.

  7. Clare Says:

    Amongst the many things I wish for for my children, I hope they are blessed with an eye for nature such as yours Bev.

  8. celeste Says:

    Hi Bev! I’m so glad Oregon put on a good show for you! Oregon does try to take care of the beaches (lots of volunteer cleanups) and the entire beach is public land(no fences). We were in Santa Cruz on winter walking on the beach(um, it was like 65′ and deserted, like what’s wrong, too COLD!?;0)) and it broke my heart, I saw a front loader scooper digging a giant hole on the beach, then dumping the beach garbage(which was everywhere) into the hole! This was right off the pier in town, not some secret lonesome beach. Hello?! sand travels up and down the coast with the wave action?! So will yer garbage?! SOrry, I got carried away, so I’ll make this a public service annoucement–pack it out!

  9. bev Says:

    am – How neat about the exploding seaweed bulbs! (-:

    Dave – lovely haiku.

    pete – yes, those same things are an essential part of my world too.

    Sarah – Thanks for dropping by my blog. The beaches around Crescent City are super — so much to see.

    robin – I never tire of wandering beaches to study objects that have washed in on the surf.

    Leslie – I always seem to come home with handfuls of pebbles too!

    Clare – Thank you for such a wonderful thought!

    celeste – Oregon and northern California were very good to me on this trip. Thanks for the public service announcement. It’s one that bears repeating… often!!

  10. Jennifer Says:

    Your posts about this trip are making me want to go to the ocean! I haven’t been in… at least… hmm…. 8 years?

  11. Dave Says:

    Awesome photos, Bev! :)

  12. Coulter Mitchell Says:


    My name is Coulter Mitchell. I am a filmmaker with Stone Soup Productions ( This January or February, we are starting production for a documentary about the mudpuppy. I am trying to reach Wes von PapineƤu, but I can not find his email online. Is it possible that you could help us out by supplying his email. We would like to attend a Mudpuppy Night, and are also interested in interviewing mudpuppy experts. Are you open to the possibility of an interview? Is there anyone you could recommend? Please let me know if this would be possible.

    Thank you,

    Coulter Mitchell
    Stone Soup Productions
    2701 W. Fletcher #1
    Chicago, IL 60618

  13. Cathy Wilson Says:

    Beautiful pictures, Bev. Now that our landscape is white, that seashore palette seems so rich. The delicate bird skull against the rock . . . wow. Lovely post.

  14. Ruhh Says:

    Lovely mosaic of colours and finds. I’ve been obsessed with the desert these past few years but these last few posts are pulling me to the coasts. Always a pleasure to visit and learn here.

  15. John Says:

    Bev, I’m been scarce. But I came by and I love the photos. I wish I’d had the chance to make a trip like that!

  16. barbara Says:

    Such wonders on the beach. Thanks for sharing.

  17. bev Says:

    Thanks everyone!

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