First Mountains of 2016, Plus a Challenge!

Welcome to 2016! Some of you are dealing with extreme weather and the fruits thereof. I hope that’s the worst you have to deal with, and that the rest of it goes rather more smoothly after this.

Seattle’s weather has decided to be magnificent. If you overlook the cold, it’s quite nice, really: abundant sunshine and super-crisp views of the mountains. Funny Diva turfed me from the house on New Year’s Day after we’d had a pizza and Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries party. We headed down to Magnuson Park for some views near sunset, and folks, the mountains were out. In force.

Image shows a panoramic view of the Cascades, Lake Washington, and a street that abruptly plunges down a hill.
First Mountain Photos of 2016! WOOT!

We need to start an ethical, non-religious cult of some sort. Then we could afford to buy up the top of one of Seattle’s hills, and have views like this every time the clouds lift, which is more often than you might think. The lovely vistas would refresh us each day as we went out to battle various forces of oppression and ignorance. We would have so much fun.

Turns out that from the top of the hill, you can see the lovely valley we so often ogle from the top of Lord Hill.

Image shows a large, v-shaped cleft in the Cascades, with a low hill and Lake Washington in the foreground.
Our favorite gap!

So if you ever visit, it definitely pays to approach Magnuson Park from the hilltop.

The sun was beginning to set. We’re on the east side of Lake Washington here, with a huge hill behind us, and you wouldn’t think we’d get much of a glitter trail. But there are some windows across the lake that do a magnificent job reflecting the setting sun at this time of year.

Image shows Lake Washington. There's a set of windows across the lake gleaming so brightly with the setting sun that they've cast a golden glitter trail on the water.
Glitter trail! Neat!

I like that our first glitter trail of 2016 was an unusual one.

Of course, the main reason to go to Magnuson is for the magnificent view of Mount Rainier across the lake.

Image shows Mount Rainier, colored pink by sunset. Lake Washington is visible in front of it. The image is framed by the bare branches of trees, and there are some evergreen bushes across the bottom.
Mount Rainier framed by trees.

Sunset paints the mountains here the most majestic salmon pink whenever there’s snow on them.

Image shows the Cascades across Lake Washington. They are turning a deep pink, with a pink sky around them.
Cascades sunset.

Utterly enchanting.

And now, ’tis time for your challenge! It’s twofold: 1. Find da bird. 2. Identify da bird.

Image shows a silhouette of leafless trees, with the lake just visible beyond. There's a bird in one of the trees.
I promise there is a bird in this picture.

I’ll have the answer photo for you tomorrow, plus bonus Mount Rainier!

First Mountains of 2016, Plus a Challenge!
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5 thoughts on “First Mountains of 2016, Plus a Challenge!

  1. rq

    I found da birb. I think it’s a turkey, but probably not.
    Glad you had a heckuvalot of fun!! May the next year bring many such loverly adventures!

  2. 4

    birb was not obliging in its poses, that’s for sure. It was much easier to ID by eyeballing it–via the camera I doubt it will be possible except via lucky guessing.

    Well, OK, ID via knowing what it was likely to be in that place and with the visible features. I could still have been wrong (but I don’t think so…)

  3. 5

    Great photos.

    Bird is on central tree three branches up isn’t it?

    Given its not even on the same continent where I live and all I have to go on is a small silhoeutte I’m not even going to try to ID it beyond dinosaur avian class.

    Some of you are dealing with extreme weather and the fruits thereof. I hope that’s the worst you have to deal with, and that the rest of it goes rather more smoothly after this.

    (Raises hand.) Here in Adelaide, South Oz, we have just had thirteen days over 35 degrees Celsius (95 Fahrenheit) and seven over forty (104 Fahrenheit) and a month that has been five degrees Celsius hotter than average, last month. I share your hope here but fear and expect things will get much worse because science says so. The trends here -as noted in stark scientific factual observations and graphs – are really grim and it both amazes and horrifies me that we still have Global Overheating Deniers in our midst. Yet we do and I wonder exactly what if anything more it will take to get such people to accept reality.

    We need to start an ethical, non-religious cult of some sort.

    Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster maybe ? Except that’s no cult and doesn’t exploit and abuse and damage its believers in the ways a cult does. Come to think of it, ‘ethical’ and ‘cult’ are rather contradictory aren’t they?

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