Bodega Bay

Our first day in Sonoma County and we couldn’t resist returning to Bodega Bay. This has become one of our favorite places anywhere. The drive there through farmland and low coastal mountains is beautiful. Blink and you’ll miss the village of Bodega, the “New England” village in the Hitchcock movie The Birds. Finally you emerge from the hills onto the bay.

It was a blue sky day, but we were worried about fog on the coast. However, when we got to the bay about 11:00 AM the fog was burning off rapidly and within an hour the sky was clear. We drove through Bodega Bay and out onto Bodega Head. This headland rises high above the surf and juts out into the Pacific. We had no sooner parked than I saw a grey whale a couple of hundred yards offshore. Gulls, terns, vultures, harriers, ducks, and ravens soared in the strong winds. Bodega Head always has wind and lots of it.

Jean took off on a hike along the cliffs. My left leg was not up to it after tweaking a quad while packing the car a couple of days ago. Therefore, I kept close to the parking lot. It took only a few minutes for me to decide that I needed to capture the glorious colors of the cliffs and the sea. First a photograph, then a pencil sketch, and then a quick watercolor study to capture the colors.

When Jean returned we drove back through Bodega Bay and to a small Sonoma County Park that is a bird watching trail. This trail is level so I thought I could walk it. We hiked a great loop out into the marsh. Few birds were evident due to the dry conditions. The marsh was mostly sand. However, we did see harriers and gulls. The best sight were the parasail surfers and windboarders. They buzzed around the bay in a colorful high speed parade.

It was a wonderful day in this fantastic place. Although late in the season we did see lots of naked ladies grouped along the road. This showy pink flower always elicits lots of hits when posted on Flickr.


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About Paul

I'm retired, but working at painting, photography, and song writing. We like to travel and paint plein air in new places. Of course that's also where photography comes into the picture, so to speak. Sometimes I get inspired to write songs about the people and places we visit.
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