Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Where Sky & Water Blend: A Misty Coastal Ride on Washington's Hwy 112

The Strait of Juan de Fuca takes on an interesting look on a cloudy day. On a cloudy day, the sky and the water merge into one. The horizon is indiscernible. And, even though rain sprinkled the air and the sky was gray, Ed and I took a morning drive along scenic U.S. Highway 112 from Joyce, Washington to Neah Bay.

We stopped to explore the shoreline and noted that the Border Patrol were present too. We learned that they were not out to stop illegal immigrants floating across from Canada like we had seen along the Mexican border of the Rio Grande. Rather, they watched for aerial drops of marijuana from Vancouver Island. That was a surprise. I hadn’t thought of the island as a habitat for pot, apparently the plant grows well there and is often undetected in the remote outreaches of the terrain. Drug runners’ boats on the Strait pick-up the floating bales of contraband and bring them ashore on the US side. The officers hadn’t caught anyone bringing pot across the border lately, but their watch would continue.

Unlike the serious natured border patrol, a whimsical Rosie welcomed us to the small harbor town of Sekiu. The date of June 13, 2005 was scratched into the cement base of this tennis shoe wearing fish, so I guess she has stood watch there for a mere three years. Sekiu is internationally known for quality sport fishing and bird watching. One fisherman, who we talked to, had been vacationing here for many years. He complained that he’s had better luck fishing in years past. His luck may have been bad out on the water, but we noticed a bald eagle had done well. The eagle sat perched on a rock tearing away at a fish, his recently caught lunch.

The color of the day continued to be gray except for some purple wild flowers that matched my purple raincoat. Although the clouds continued to hang low in the sky, sometimes shrouding the coastal rocks, we enjoyed this picturesque scenic drive on along Highway 112. It goes to show you that the sun doesn’t always have to shine to get pleasure from the scenery.

July 26, 2008

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