July 3, 2014

Adventure, Motorcycle, Outdoors, Travel

I got a lot done to the bike this past weekend in preparation for our Oregon road trip next week. Oil and rear drive fluid changes, new K&N air filter, new plugs, suspension adjustments, wash and wax…it was a busy one. We have pretty much all we need so all that is left is the packing and riding. I am converting the square headlight over to a round one, and I got it in the mail this past week so all I need to do is mount it but it may take a bit of fiddling with it to get it right. From what I read from several different people who have done it was that the headlight I got off an older V45 will pretty much bolt right on. I am not quite sure if I will have the time to do it before we go, but it will be on there sooner rather than later. Square headlights never looked good on cars, and even worse on Jeeps and motorcycles.

It wasn’t so busy we were not able to get out for a ride however! We got in a 60-70 miles Tuesday night west of Port Angeles on Highway 112. What a fantastic road to ride, and I say it every time I ride it and have had it in my blog before. Ups and downs, twists and turns, mountains, the Strait, rivers, farmlands, trees…a nice two-lane adventure for a trip that is short or long. I rode the bike all around the whole weekend and the weather was absolutely spectacular. We had 70s and close to 80 here. What a great place to be!

Crab season started today, but I completely forgot to get my catch card. I have not eaten any since last season so it is definitely time! It is going to be busy out on the water, especially in the early part of the season. John Wayne Marina was pretty jammed with crabbers today when I was coming back out, and with the holiday weekend it oughta be crazy.

Today I got to see my first baby pigeon guillemot. He was a day or two old and was so cute! A few days ago I saw some ducklings with their mom. The gulls are hatching as well, and today I saw a seal pup pop up by my boat when I was out on the water patrolling…it is that time of the season here on Protection Island.

Boat Training

Adventure, Just things, Outdoors, Uncategorized

Well, I have been out getting some boating experience before my trip for certification classes while in Hawaii. A few weeks ago we went out and it was a nice day. I practiced some docking and running the boat in the Strait and just getting the feel of this new experience.

Today we went out again, and it was a bit different. The day started out like this at John Wayne Marina:

Morning at John Wayne Marina - Sequim, WA

Morning at John Wayne Marina – Sequim, WA

We got the boat ready to go and headed out into the bay and then into the Strait. There we found fog, and it was dense fog but still not too bad. We motored onward toward Protection Island to check on some research going on with hatchlings.

I really enjoy getting to be involved with these research projects. It is very interesting to witness the science firsthand and witness nature in action close-up and personal. I am also learning so much about so many new and different things. While moving between locations, I was able to snap a few pictures today:

View east from Protection Island National Wildlife Refuge - Sequim, WA

View east from Protection Island National Wildlife Refuge – Sequim, WA

View of the Olympics from Protection Island National Wildlife Refuge - Sequim, WA

View of the Olympics from Protection Island National Wildlife Refuge – Sequim, WA

View of the Olympics from Protection Island National Wildlife Refuge - Sequim, WA

View of the Olympics from Protection Island National Wildlife Refuge – Sequim, WA

As you can see, there was a lot of fog, and it actually had dissipated somewhat since we came out. It then came back… with a vengeance.

The fog was quite thick on the return trip. I had to navigate by instruments (and with guidance from the person training me) nearly the whole trip back. Most people know what it is like to drive a car in thick fog – you cannot see anything and it makes you tense. In a boat it is worse since there is that little detail called “water” thrown into the mix. In a car you can pull over and stop. Being on the water adds quite the sense of urgency. You really have to maintain calm to get through it, and you have to think everything through carefully and deliberately.

It was a slow, tedious journey back to the marina. We made it back fine after a few course adjustments to overcome the current and other boats in the same predicament. It was a valuable learning experience for me and will be useful in the future. It made me think of the captains of big ships and the hard work that must be done to sail a ship in conditions worse than what we went through today.

I am really looking forward to going out again to learn more and get ready for my certification in Hawaii!