Denise Goldberg's blog

Sunday, March 27, 2011

On a beach soon to be owned by birds

The beach at the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge closes on April 1st. It will remain closed until the piping plover nesting season is over. That could be July, it could be August - it's up to the birds!

Since this is the last weekend the beach is available for human walking I just had to visit for a long beach walk. I was hoping to convince some birds to pose for my camera too.

The air was somewhat crisp - just 40 degrees, with the wind gusting from 21 to 31 miles per hour. I didn't realize how strong the wind was until I turned back, heading directly into the wind for my return trip.

Usually I spend some time on the inland side of the island too, but today was devoted entirely to the ocean side. It was low tide and the ocean was relatively quiet as I started heading south, wandering in a not-quite-straight-line in an attempt to keep my feet dry. There were streams of water draining to the ocean, sometimes narrow enough to step over, sometimes needing to head inland plus backtrack a bit to find some drier sand.

I was hoping for a bird-decorated beach. No birds, just the sounds of a relatively calm ocean. I walked, and I walked, and... hey! I think I see some birds! There were a couple of sea gulls walking in the water. Then I saw a flock of small birds, skittering, running together, turning, heading in the opposite direction, pecking at the sand, probably finding interesting things to eat, skittering... I moved a bit closer, stood still, watched. I moved forward slowly, stopped again, moved, stopped. I have no idea how long I stood there, fascinated by the movement of the birds. I think they were sanderlings, a small member of the sandpiper family.

It was definitely a good beach walk day.

a gaggle of sanderlings, skittering

a sanderling balancing act

More photos can be seen in my gallery Parker River wonders - 2011, starting with this photo and ending here.

Photos become cards

If you've received a card from me in the last few years you know that my photos drive my card creation. A thought has been tucked into the back of my mind for a while; this weekend it finally emerged. I've created a shop on zazzle, a place to purchase Denise-branded cards.

Click to my zazzle shop to see photos that are available as cards.

There are only a few photos in the shop right now, but it's a start. If you have a favorite photo that you'd like to purchase as a card and that photo isn't available in my card shop, click hey, I want to order a card, but... Follow the instructions on that page to let me know which photo you'd like me to add.

If you lose the link to my shop, just click on the entry Photos become cards in the sidebar of my blog.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Field of robins

Early evening, quickly walking, looking... I passed a field that appeared to be the home of a robin convention. Robins were everywhere, each standing in a separate patch of grass, occasionally scurrying around, looking.

A field of birds, robins, a sign of spring...

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Sky cycles

Snow flakes floated through the air occasionally through the afternoon. Flurries, clear, flurries, clear.

By late afternoon gray clouds dropped low, obscuring the trees. Heavy snow was flying as I started my drive home. Driving east through the snow... after a bit I started seeing edges of blue and white through the snow. Heavy snow continued to fall as the sky cleared. The snow grew lighter, then stopped, leaving blue skies decorated by puffy white clouds.

And then... Heavy snow was again flying towards me, visibility dropping, gray behind snowflakes. Snow, snow, clearing. Home, time for my early evening walk. I headed out under blue skies, decorated once again by puffy white clouds.

new green growth, decorated by snow

Monday, March 21, 2011

Spring brings snow

Friday's weather brought warmth to a day that was classified as winter. Today the weather wizard gifted us with snow on the first full day of spring.

I hope the (bird) owners of this house are snug inside.

birdhouse, a refuge from snow

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Green socks!

Remember the photo I posted of a sculpture wearing pink socks just two weeks ago? It must be another sign of spring - today, that big silver bird is wearing green!

silver sculpture of a great blue heron, wearing green socks!

Emerging color

A sure sign of spring...

yellow crocus

Seeking sea gulls

I thought I would see if I could find some sea gulls who would be willing to pose for me.

Low tide along the New Hampshire coast was before 6:30 this morning, dictating a somewhat early start. While the tide had turned by the time I started walking, there were still long stretches of smooth wet (and sometimes icy!) sand for walking. There were even a few birds who decided to play!

sea gull walking

sea gull standing

More photos from today can be seen in the gallery Along the New Hampshire coast - 2011, beginning with this photo and ending here.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

High tide

I felt the need to walk by the sea. Even though I knew that the tide was high I headed to the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge for a few hours. When I arrived, the air was wet and the sky was gray. The light drizzle stopped fairly quickly, and the clouds started moving. It was a bit chilly with temperatures in the 30s so walking quickly was the order of the day.

I may need to return next weekend at low tide since I still need a long walk on the beach there. Next weekend is the last before the annual April 1st turnover of the beach to the piping plovers.

"Each year beginning April 1 st, the majority of the refuge beach is closed to all public to provide undisturbed nesting and feeding habitat for the federally threatened piping plover."

From the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge web site
sea gull atop a pole

magic clouds over marsh

pounding waves

More photos from today can be seen in the gallery Parker River wonders - 2011, beginning with this photo and ending here.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Peeking out

As I was walking, I saw some crocus peeking out of winter-colored landscape, white, purple and a bit of green against shades of brown. Ah, a sign of things to come...

early crocus

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Beach walk

Blue returned to the sky today. I satisfied my need for an outdoor wander with a walk by the ocean, listening to the waves roar, dodging the water rolling in as high tide approached.

ocean and blue sky

Friday, March 11, 2011

Fog rising

Heavy rain ended. By early evening there were clear patches of sky contrasting with fog rising from still snow-covered pieces of ground.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Zion in white... photos!

Photos from my (too) quick trip to Zion National Park can now be viewed in the gallery Zion in white.

And yes, you can see snow falling in some of the photos from the first day. There was nothing on the lens that caused those faint white lines, it was my craziness of shooting photos in the snow!

Zion in white, photos!

Interested in words too? You can find my ramblings in my blog entries tagged Zion 2011.

Snow woman in miniature

When we were wandering from the Temple of Sinawava to the end of the Riverside Walk (on our first day at Zion), wet snow was falling. At the very end of the trail we discovered that other hikers had been building a collection of tiny snow people. I really liked this little snow woman.

--- Rover

tiny snow woman

Monday, March 07, 2011


Yes, I know, it's March, and March is a funny month.

The temperature this morning was a balmy 55 degrees. As the day passed, it dropped lower and lower, reaching the low 30s by the end of the afternoon with wind chill making it feel like a very cold 18 degrees. Isn't it supposed to get warmer as the sun rises higher in the sky?

I feel lucky though. Last night over two inches of rain fell here. That's a lot of water, but I'd much rather have the rain than the 21 inches of snow that fell where my folks live in upstate New York.

It's almost spring. Should I believe the calendar?

I wish...

Oh how I wish Hawaii was closer, or that there was some magic mode of transport that would allow me to hop across the width of North America and a chunk of the Pacific Ocean in the blink of an eye. Maybe I should try Dorothy's trick from the Wizard of Oz...

There's an eruption in Hawaii, flaming red lava spewing from a fissure in Kīlauea's east rift zone. Volcanoes fascinate me; I'd love to see an active eruption. I was able to see flowing lava on just one of my visits to the Big Island, a quietly flowing, need to be careful not to step in the wrong place kind of lava. I wonder if I could drop a hint to Pele to send me a message when she decides the volcanoes should be wonderfully active. I know, I know, I'm going to need to settle for photos for now.

Pu`u `Ō `ō and Napau Crater on Kilauea’s east rift zone
Photo courtesy of USGS Hawaii Volcano Observatory

Sunday, March 06, 2011

Sculptures wearing pink

Sometimes things jump out at me, bringing smiles. Today that was caused by sculptures of two birds mounted on a dock, wearing winter attire.

sculpture of a bird, dressed in a bright pink scarf

scultpure of a bird, wearing pink socks

Coastal Sunday

The weather forecast called for warmth, with rain entering the picture sometime in the afternoon. I headed to the New Hampshire coast in the morning with walking on my mind.

It was high tide, and the ocean was roaring. A mist hung in the air, mist that seemed to be from the crashing waves. I drove up the coast, stopping to wander here and there, spending most of the time fascinated with reflections in the calm waters of Portsmouth.

houses, colorful reflections

A few more photos from this afternoon can be viewed in the gallery Along the New Hampshire coast - 2011.

Saturday, March 05, 2011


Today was a bit of a tease, a feeling that spring was in the air.

As I walked on mostly dry but sometimes ice-covered sidewalks, I heard birdsong and the sound of heavy wind. It's March.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Magic light

The magic of a landscape as the light changes...

These two photos were taken at the Court of the Patriarchs in Zion National Park, separated in time by a little over one day. The first jumped into my camera on Sunday as a snowstorm was winding down, the second on Monday after the storm moved out, leaving a sky decorated in blue & white.

Do you have a preference? While I enjoy sunshine I find that I like Sunday's mysterious edge with clouds surrounding the peaks.

Court of the Patriarchs, Zion National Park, snow and clouds

Court of the Patriarchs, Zion National Park, sunshine