Thursday, June 16, 2011

Chambers Bay Beach in University Place -- the North Beach

sign with directions and rules
We planned to go to Chambers Bay Beach in University Place, WA, today (actually it's "yesterday" now -- I'm up too late tonight writing this and need to get to bed!) to check it out at low tide (a -3.4!). It rained this morning, and I wasn't sure how the weather was going to turn out. I looked the weather forecast up on accuweather.com, though, and according to their forecast there was going to be some sunshine, so I felt hopeful.  The weather ended up being really nice -- a lot of clouds, but a lot of sunshine, too!

We have been to Chambers Bay Beach before, but had never gone to see the North Beach yet, so we wanted to explore that side today.  It starts out very rocky, and it's a little difficult to walk on very fast.  It's easy to stumble on the rocks.  After about ten minutes of slowly walking and stopping to take pictures, we reached the sandy part of the beach.

walking onto the North Beach
(picture taken by my 10-year-old daughter)

You can see the sandy part of the beach coming up
(picture taken by my 10-year-old daughter)

(click to view larger picture)

(click to view larger picture)


We walked for about an hour north along the beach.   We walked at a pretty leisurely pace, enjoying the water and the beautiful view and looking to see what we could find. We had the beach almost to ourselves, especially as we got farther down the beach, and it felt very peaceful.  The waves (of cold water!) washed gently ashore and the air felt pleasantly warm. The sky was bright through the many different-shaped clouds.  Sunlight and clouds reflected in the water of the Puget Sound and made it sparkle and come alive with various ever-changing shades of blue, gray, and white.

geoduck siphon
 We saw a couple geoducks' siphons in the sand.  After I saw a double-fountain of water squirting up, I noticed a really big geoduck siphon sticking out of the sand. We often see many little holes on sandy beaches and get squirt by geoducks through the holes as we walk, but we don't often see a siphon sticking up, and there were two of them today!  After noticing the first one, a couple minutes later I saw a smaller one after it squirt up some water.  We've never been able to capture them on camera squirting water, but we sure hope to some day.




my older daughter holding
a small starfish
(picture taken by my 10-year-old daughter)
We saw various types of seaweed on the beach.  They are so colorful, and it was interesting to examine them.   I'm not sure of all the types that were there, but I think some of their names were green string lettuce, bullwhip kelp, bladder wrack (pop weed),  red spaghetti, and sugar kelp.  A great website for information on different types of seaweed is Seaweeds of the Pacific Northwest.


We also saw some small starfish -- one attached to a rock and several others floating in the water.  We picked up a few of the small starfish briefly to get a closer look.  Actually, at first I picked one up to see if it was alive because we were surprised at how the little starfish floated about with the waves, all topsy turvy, but it definitely was alive! We think they must have been young starfish because they were so small.


When we had walked as far as down the beach as we could go -- until we saw a sign that said the beach past that sign was a private beach -- we sat down and ate lunch. 

sitting on the beach eating lunch
(click to see larger picture)

Here are a few picture I took, and I'm sure I'll post more pictures we took later!  It was really a beautiful walk on a beautiful day.

 


 

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2 comments:

  1. Those pictures are beautiful! Your daughter has a good eye for photography. :)

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