Friday, May 21, 2021

Huntington Beach SP

Super long post...
As promised from my last post here is the rack I purchased, if I had to review it for the money it's perfect,.it's not the best made one, and it's not the best quality, but for the price it's just right...
It's really simple after you put it together, mount it via the 2 inch trailer hitch receiver, it will hold 2 bikes, what I really like is the way it folds down out of the way so I can get into the cargo area without removing the bike...Its a bit annoying to put the pin back in with the weight of the bike on it but it's manageable. Here I did have the bike off but you can lower the rack with the bike on too...the gear shifter I replaced is working well...

So feeling confident that the bike wont fall off I took a 2.5 hr drive to the coast to try out my pedal the 2 mile beach walk...OK here is where human error comes into play...I got a late start and arrived at high tide...10:30 AM so I had some difficulty finding hard packed sand on the ride IN...Because the fishermen set up all down the beach...and I would have to steer behind them in the loose sand,  or risk being tangled up in their lines, if I go in front of them so I didn't consider that either.  I pedaled in and out of them till I came to the service road. Its about 1/3 the way down.

Fishermen lined up

I pedaled the  service road the staff use when they take a short cut in their ATV to make rounds, and it was sandy and had sand spurs that  stuck in my tires, did not cause a flat, but gave some worry and the beginning part of that trail was ankle deep sand and I had to push the bike...
So those are the trouble shooting things I ran into,
but once I arrived at the jetty cove area I had a blast. 

Parked the bike and left my backpack on it, and  made my way to the jetty  salt marsh ponds,

 found Semipalmated Plover, Least Tern, Black Bellied Plover, Snowy Egret, Willet, Wilson's Plover with chicks, and two Whimbrel, one took to the air and flew to a pond farther away but one hung out for a photo opt.  


The Wilson's Plover with a chick they had 3 chicks altogether

Hiding behind Mom, and Papa made sure I didn't get too close..

I came upon this odd couple they were together  A couple of bachelors maybe...a Sanderling with a Ruddy Turnstone.  Besties

They always remind me of an ice cream sundae...dripping with color

Oh and a couple of Oyster Catchers showed up----> distant view..

The group of Terns had some company with them so I started to try and pick through that to see what's in's like sorting thru straight pins, or needles in haystacks looking for the subtle differences,

The big ones of course the Royal Tern.

Some are ringed I noticed...

Then I found some  Sandwich Terns, with the little yellow tip of the beak and much smaller than the royals 

also some ringed.

And a flying Sandwich...

When I see a Tern in the air, the first thing I look for is the wing tips, the second is leg color and the 3rd is bill color.  BUT where is his legs??? LoL tucked in pretty tight. 

found 2 Common Terns in there as well short reddish legs with a bi-color of red and black beak...A more finely shaped head, one on each side of the big tern preening centerstage...

and this batch had one Black Skimmer trying to hide but he stood out like a sore thumb...
 across the waterway on the opposite bank I could make out a few more skimmers.

No hiding that beak

The little Least Terns are all over the place they have a nesting area roped off for them and it's protected by an electric fence!  ZAPPA.....They make  little wooden tents to give some cover to the eggs, protection from Gulls and others.

According to ebird 100 is way too many TOO F'N BAD...Im so fed up with ebird...

After my trek around the cove end of the Jetty I moved the bike to the Jetty proper and had my lunch break and relaxed for at least an hour...nothing like sitting on hot asphalt just taking in all the recreation  happening around me

the Jetty cove

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After the rest....I pedaled to the point where you exit the Jetty to head back, tied up the bike and walked to the other end watched these Ruddy Turnstones hunt on the rocks, 

Then it was time to head back....can you find my bike in this photo?

the ride back was fine, what is normally an hr walk of 2 miles I did in about 20 minutes and that's with photo stops!!   I still don't have my biking legs yet.  Anyways it was more of a challenge that I had wanted but I did not figure in the tide, so the beach was wide open for the return I could easily get behind the fishermen the ones who remained most were gone, 

Sanderlings in the surf

 Jelly Fish  make food for the Black Bellied Plover

And a couple of  Sea Star...
did you know they can grow a new limb if one comes up missing for some "unforeseen" reason? 

I parked before exiting the park and walked along the sides of the Mullet Pond, had more Black Bellied Plover, along with Least Sandpiper, and Semipalmated Sandpiper along with Semipalmated Plover...

Semi Plover with a long worm...

a Least Sandpiper in the sand...

A black Bellied Plover in a hurry to see what's up over there....

The Semipalmated Sandpiper, 

The word semipalmated refers to a slight amount of webbing between the toes...

and the usual Great Blue Heron

And Yellowlegs, greater 

I was a tired puppy and got home around 8 pm...if not for having  to fed the girls  I would stay over, but they depend on me. 
 I was surprised at how crowded it was people have come out of the woodwork like 
wolf spiders on the the wood pile, hopefully they will return to the mall But judging from all the fun they were having, I rather doubt it teehee! 

Till Next safe out there...

Every day is a new Adventure.


  1. Thats a good rack Sondra, and so handy having a tow hitch on the van. You can always take the bike with you even if you dont use it. It'll be so handy as you cover so much ground. If you cycle on sand let some air out of the tyres as you get a better grip. Dont forget to hose the bike down afterwards. It'll take a few rides to get your cycle legs.
    Lots of waders here and I suspect not many people around yet. It must be a good feeling to relax on sun warmed taramc, looking out of the window at the rain and winds it will be a while before I can do that !!

    I couldn't spot your bike.

    Have a good weekend.

    1. Hi Dave, Oh I must do that wash my bike down I forgot...I have been leaving it on the back its really heavy to lift onto to the rack but a good arm workout. I didn't think of letting air out, also a great tip. It was a perfect day weather wise, we have some heat coming in next week but the humidity is low for us it's not so bad. I got a lot of sun on my face arms and legs the day I was there. Hope your rains dries up soon!

  2. Hello,
    Sounds like a wonderful day, the beach looks beautiful. I love all the shore birds, the Plover with chicks, the Oystercatcher, Black Skimmer, Whimbrel and all the Terns are some of my favorites. The sea star is a cool find. Great photos! Have a happy day and a great weekend!

    1. Hi Eileen, I also love shorebirds, its so nice to not be breaking my neck picking birds out of heavy laden trees full of summer leaves. The little chicks were so cute, and that brave dad he didn't care if I was 50 ft tall he ran right over and got between me and his family...what a guy eh?

  3. What a fabulous day you had! love all the sea birds you found on this trip. And the beach looked so wonderful. Your going to have some killer calves from riding on the sand. haha Enjoy yourself

    1. Hi Jo....Ha well I have no choice it's all sand here in fact this area is known as the "sandhills" I think the ground used to be an ocean floor eons ago. I haven't ridden one mile since Monday I got my shot and felt a little tired and off but OK, and it's now hot! I should have gotten my bike in shape earlier in the season. Have a good weekend.

  4. What a day you had, so many great birds, always seems a little odd to see birds that we see often here like the Turnstone and Oystercatcher! My husband has a similar rack for his bike, he goes off to ride the canals!

    1. Hi Pam, I think the rack was a good thing I did not worry about my bike one bit. I feel the same when I see birds like the Gannet on your's such a small world really.

  5. Oh my gosh that was a wonderful day; your shorebird pictures are so good and you saw so many (I need to save this post for ID purposes when we're in Florida, you are more help than Sibley or any of my books). I'm glad the bike carrier thingy worked. Do you carry binos and your camera? Camera and Phone? What I'm trying to figure out is how you do that on your bike. I picture everything kind of jostling around -- and you must have the camera right at hand based on all the wonderful pictures you got iinstead of in a backpack? Anyway it is working a treat for you and for us!

    1. HI Sallie, I had on a backpack and it has a mesh pocket I keep the binoculars in and the camera I sling around me like a pocket book fashion and it sits at my side sort of I must look like an idiot lol...but it works for me, NOW If I could just pedal in a straight line that would be nice. When Im only going a short distance I use a fanny pack...keep my camera in it cause my bins won't fit.

  6. Looks like a very successful outing here. Biking on sand sounds challenging but worth it for all your great sightings. And your turnstone pics are so good!

    1. Hi Jen, I have noticed the turnstones don't mind people at all...I did enjoy zooming down the beach on the bike return time I will check a tide chart before I ride off into the sand. It def made the trip different...I wish I lived closer to this area so I could go more often.


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