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Two Days....TWO Beaches

The photos I'm sharing on this post were taken on two different days this summer. The first set is from a beach walk at Padre Island National Seashore [a Federal Park]. It was a glorious day. Clear, hot of course, but the sea breeze kept it fairly comfortable. And the scenic wonders kept me walking...

MALAQUITE BEACH
NORTH Padre Island 
[if you take the time to read below, this is not SOUTH Padre Island]


Trail from Visitor Center to Beach


Again, to curb the confusion with many, this area is NOT SOUTH PADRE ISLAND -famous for many, the SOUTHERN tip, South Padre Island, is located near Brownsville, Texas, by the Mexican border, some 115 miles from Corpus Christi.  Tho it's all the same island, NORTH Padre Island, on the other hand, is just a few miles from my home.   Malaquite Pavilion is a covered area  named for the band [tribe] of Native Americans around this area of the Coastal Bend [and, 'coastal bend' is a moniker for the curved boundary of the Corpus Christi area where the state 'curves or bends along the shoreline as you can see on any map]...the beach is pronounced MAL uh keet.  Within this compound there is a visitor center, a gift shop, covered showers, a vast section off the pavilion grounds is a research center and large 'incubator' for the saving of the endangered Kemp Ridley Sea Turtles.  Each year the scientists/staff hold several release days of the new hatchlings where the public is invited; of which Bud and I attended a few summer's back.  Read about it HERE.


Behind me as I walk the beach, the sand dunes.  And this cutie, a Pug breed, named Heidi was geared up in its life jacket!!!


Colorful umbrellas grace the sandy shore.


Brown Pelicans roost on a huge tree that washed ashore [several yards from the beach] and took 'root' years ago. Sometimes, gulls or I've seen cormorants perched here searching for a school of fish swimming in to feed. It has become a focal point for me since most times there is some kind of bird life and it makes a good backdrop with the continual wave action.



SOUTH JETTY/MAGEE BEACH
Port Aransas, Texas



A Cargo Ship Coming In from the Gulf
[more photos of the same below as it makes its way thru the channel]


I oftentimes make a special side trip from the birding sanctuaries/refuges to the beach about three miles from the fishing village of Port Aransas. The jetty can be walked [tho at some areas it's like you're putting your life at risk because the boulders that the jetty consists of are somewhat precariously situated]. I walk the beach that is cordoned off from any vehicle traffic from the jetty to the pier about 1/2 mile or so away. Shorebirds such as terns, skimmers, and gulls abound. Oftentimes egrets will hunt for fish at the edge of the jetty as I begin my sand laden trek to the pier. But most of all, I just love sitting on the boulders and watch the pelicans, the fishermen, and the huge cargo ships come into the channel heading to Corpus Christi about 20 miles to the west. From where I sit to watch the world go by, I can see the vehicle ferries taking cars, semi trucks and RVs across the channel. I can see on a clear day the Lydia Ann Lighthouse [now privately owned]. I watch the tourist boats heading out into the Gulf of Mexico, I watch the sports enthusiasts such as fishermen or boaters that cruise the sea...or just people watch. It's a great pastime!!

A little over a week ago, this is what I witnessed around the jetty and Magee Beach:








Searching for Dolphins at the Ship's Bow

Then, the last segment today is of something I've noticed each and every time I drive out of the dunes from the beach back into the village to head on the island highway back home. I've always been very curious as to what it was/is. For some time, I thought it may just be an old home foundation. Other times I thought it perhaps is of some historical significance. There was no one behind me on the road, I still had my camera on the seat beside me, so I stopped to photograph the area. Well, come to find out, it is of the latter mentioned...something of historical importance and has now been designated with an historical marker. [I have yet to find the marker - it must be on the OTHER beach access road. I will next time use that entrance and see if I can find it]

Here is what I took pictures of...it's on a small incline, just about a football field away from the beach road...


Still no other vehicles at the time, so I kept snapping. In the viewfinder I noticed the darkened 'figure' at the left center. "What's that?" I zoomed in...it was a Crested Caracara perched atop the stone ruins!



It's ruins from World War II - a gun replacement that was of temporary use to protect the Texas Coast. When I find the marker, I will hopefully climb the dune and get much better pictures.

29 comments :

  1. Both of these are of interest to me, especially the beautiful scenes at the first one. And I look forward to learning more about the second one, Anni. Have a great Sunday. :-)

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  2. The Caracara was not polite at all to turn his back to you! Is he like a hawk? I would LIVE at this beach! Such beautiful sand, it looks totally unspoiled. Your first ship photo, black & white? OH MY!!! You edited it, and I have never seen anything like it! I have never seen waves like his! Love the pelicans! Especially the colored one and he is standing right in front of you looking at you! Are they tame around people?

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    1. More so like a vulture Ginny...they are mostly carrion eaters, not hunters.

      And no, it's not black and white...just a hazy day.

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  3. my first ever sighting of a crested Caraca.. I LOVE the photo of the waves and the cargo ship. AWESOME... the beaches and umbrellas are so beautiful.. that is one long island, but then everything in TX is BIG or so I have heard. love ALL the pelicans and the two shots of the diamonds in the water are spectacular.

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    1. ...you should see the size of INSECTS in Texas!! ;-)

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  4. Interesting set of pictures. I love seeing the water scenes,as that is something I don't ever get to see around here

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    1. ....oh but we both have great stuff to share from our homes!!

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  5. From my memory of the past it seems North Padre Island was much cleaner and prettier then South Padre Island.

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    1. Still is....at least for the most part. It is becoming a bit more congested and populated tho, sadly.

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  6. You have such wonderful adventures!! I don't know of anyone who embraces their surroundings the way you do! I have not been to Padre Island/Mustang Island in years and years. I used to go with Summer and we stayed in a company condo right on the beach. Someday I am coming back.....My mother used to go to Port Aransas often. I love visiting you.....it gives me a 'beach fix' which I always need!!

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    1. Hot in your area too then? Yep, here as well. The beach is always a good place to go for some relief.

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  7. Your pictures make me want to go walk the beach. Of course ours here isn't as nice looking.
    Too bad the Caracara was facing the other way. He looks like a very interesting bird

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    1. That they are...interesting looking birds. And very unique in features.

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  8. The sand and sea look the same as I was fortunate to enjoy for about 20 years. I love the colors of the sea as you show in picture #23. You don't just do bird watching, you are a sea watcher as well!

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    1. I pretty much love all things nature!!! [except snakes lol]

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  9. Those are great wildlife photos with the dolphins and the crested caracara. That is not a bird we ever get to see around here. You must have a long zoom lens.

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    1. Yep, a pretty powerful lens for birding times!!
      Thanks!

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  10. Wonderful summer shots.

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    1. Tomorrow's the first day of Autumn here in the states...and I swear we'll have MUCH more Summer before it cools down...IF it does. lol
      Thanks Fiona.

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  11. I've spent many hours in those places (all except for the war relic) What wonderful memories you brought back; I am usually not very good at just sitting and looking but I remember happily hanging out on those boulders for hours while Bill fished.... and never even opening the book I always have with me in case of boredom. It is just the most beautiful place with lots to see and look at as you so well point out.

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    1. Yes indeed. Too much to watch too much too see...even it's a repeat of the day before with so much of the same....it's still all unique and a new day!!

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  12. These are wonderful places, Anni - thank you for taking us along on these amazing walks! The blue ocean under even bluer skies is so beautiful and all the fun things you show us always make me smile (like the pug with his life jacket :) The crested caracara on the ruins with the wild sunflower is a really great shot! Wish I could come along! xx Karen

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    1. I had to laugh out loud, literally when I saw the puppy with the life jacket! Thanks Karen.

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  13. So many nice photos of these two beaches! I have hear about caracaras before but have never seen one. Great you had the eye to catch this one. I do not see wildlife that easily. My husband is the one who points things out.

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  14. I am so sorry I am so late Anni....I don't know much about this part of the country sadly so I am happy to learn...Michelle

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