I was rather surprised that I was able to accomplish the tasks I had set up for myself last weekend when Brad and I traveled out to Lake Ozette. I had given myself three goals with the expectations of only finishing one, hopefully two, due to weather or other complications. The most ambitious was capturing the Milky Way. But in this case it’s nice to be able to come back with everything marked off the ‘to-do’ list.

Shooting Milky Way

First on my list was to capture the Milky Way over Lake Ozette. Although there no light pollution that far out on the coast, the weather makes this area a risky choice. Even when the forecast is for clear weather you more often than not have to deal with the marine layer obscuring the sky.

Although there was debris, most of it plastic, my overall impression was that it was not as much as I remember from my paddle down the coast a few years back.

Fortunately for us caught the exception to the rule. We scouted a handful of locations around the lake’s rim, and using Sky Guide to judge the time and location of the Milky Way we set an alarm for 1 AM. A night sky filled with stars made sliding out of a warm sleeping bag into the chilly night far easier. Setting up our tripods on the shoreline I was amazed that I could make out the Milky Way with the naked eye. The sky was just beginning to brighten when we returned to our sleeping bags..

I haven’t had a chance to download my SD cards but if what I saw on my camera monitor is any indication I capture a couple of promising shots. If so, I hope to have a photograph posted for this weeks wallpaper. Check back on Wednesday or Thursday.

Plastic Fishing Nets found during Milky Way Shot
A huge ball of plastic fishing nets trapped on the beach. These lost nets are responsible for wasteful marine death. Photograph by Steve Weileman (www.xexplore.com)

Petroglyphs at Wedding Rock

After our early morning photo shot the next item on the list was to get out and revisit the petroglyphs at Wedding Rock. Over the years I’ve found approximately 30 or so but the mid-day high tide prohibited seeing the complete collection. Still it was nice to see that the ones that were visible were still in good shape.

The variety and location are still puzzling to me. For Brad it was his first visit. Pondering over the ‘why here’ question, he came up with a simple but probably correct answer; because it was the best face to let out a bit of creative steam. I think he might be right.

Shipwreck not far from Lake Ozette during Milky Way Shot
Shipwreck cast up on the high tide line. Rather small for an ocean vessel; more likely made it way down one of the local rivers before being tossed up on the beach. Photograph by Steve Weileman (www.xexplore.com)

Beach Debris

We hiked the entire Ozette Loop which includes a three mile section of coastline. Although there was debris, most of it plastic, my overall impression was that it was not as much as I remember from my paddle down the coast a few years back. It hard to draw any hard conclusion from such a limited sample. More than likely it just means the currents have shift and the ‘collection beaches’ have changed location slightly but I’d like to think it means people are becoming more aware and we’re already seeing some changes in the right direction. Fingers crossed.

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