Sunday, April 14, 2013

April in Sequim

The annual Robin Hop is going on in my front yard.
Perhaps because I am identified as a 'spring baby,' it is one of my favorite seasons. I love seeing the first Robin with their puffed up red-colored feathers on their breasts hopping along and cocking their heads, listening for the movement of something they can eat.

Where I used to live in Florida, the house was right under the Flyway and robins and cousins were dropping out of the sky right into my back yard. I had an organic yard (used no pesticides) with spring water oozing up in it, so they had all they needed for water and nourishment whether heading north or south.

The place where I am staying now has plenty of evergreens nearby so there are eagles of all ages hanging out, and that may be a deterrent to the smaller robins, but it was a pleasure to see one bouncing around near the dandelions.
Main Street, Sequim, WA

A neighbor offered to drive me around with her dog in the back seat to see the various local parks and to get better acquainted with the area around Sequim, here on the Olympic Peninsula. I also made notes about back routes to get past the center of town because in a couple of weeks the 118th Irrigation Festival will be starting (runs May 3-14 - over Mother's Day weekend, too) and it will be extremely difficult to access certain parts of town quickly. (If you go to the link, you will see specifically what the festival is all about and understand why water is so critical for this part of the peninsula.) In summary, a fellow called D.R. "Crazy" Callum designed and installed the irrigation ditches that turned prairie into paradise with water and the water started flowing on May 1, 1895 for the first time. The very next year the festival was started with a celebration at Callum's farm and it evolved into what is now the longest, continuously operating festival in Washington state.

This is also the Centennial year for Sequim, so the duration of the festival is being celebrated along with the founding of what was - all those many years ago - a village.
It is hard to see the city of Sequim due to the slight rise in the topography
here, but it is just on the other side of the evergreens. The very symmetric
peaks of the Olympics are getting more snow; much needed.
It turns out there is a community pot-luck dinner followed by a barn dance on Saturday, May 4, and I think I am going to take advantage of that event and do a little celebrating myself that night.

Driving around this portion of the peninsula, I was motivated to take a few photos to share with y'all...
This is a very tiny park with a huge shoreline but the sandstone cliffs
are daunting as you can see a man walking below them in this shot.
You are looking toward the Olympics, over part of Discovery Bay.
The weather was sunny one minute and rain came pouring down in others, so it was just by luck that I got some decent shots at all.

If you look at the blue sky in this photo to your left, you can see just a bit of what is called the "blue hole" that seems to open up over Sequim when everything else is grey or wet. Apparently due to the rainshadow effect from the Olympic range, the height of the mountains is enough to disturb the air flow and creates an opening to the sun and blue sky once in awhile. Where Seattle gets upwards of 35 inches of rain a year, Sequim is closer to 20, thus the prairies and the need for irrigation water. Mt. Olympus, on the other hand, gets something like 220 inches (!!!) of rain per year... barely 60 miles to the west of Sequim! (If you go to the link, you can see the map and a more scientific explanation than the one I've given.)

Looking west over the Strait of San Juan de Fuca and B.C.
So that's why I like to spend time here... and why houses are so expensive here and in Port Townsend, Coupeville, Gig Harbor, Whidbey Island, and in Vancouver, B.C. People long ago figured out the benefits of living in the NW and finding the sunny spots to settle in.

Plum trees on Sequim Ave.
This has been a wetter spring than normal, according to local information and much cooler as well. I wonder if we're getting all the wet that should have been going to Colombia, because my sources there tell me the rain has been slow in arriving for them.

Nevertheless, the rhododendrons are blooming as are the daffodils, crocuses (croci?) and other signs of spring in this part of the world. The shifty weather is just another part of the seasonal timing.
Cat-O-Nine Tails shedding their seeds for another season.
In the distance the Olympics collect water for later...
Sequim Ave., looking west (I think)


  1. I live in B.C. (on Vancouver Island) and love it. I hope I never have to leave. The Strait of Georgia is just a few minutes from where I live. :-)

  2. Maybe someday we can meet, Birdie!! If we sent messages by seagull, we are practically neighbors!!

  3. That would be so much fun! I have never met another blogger. :-)