We vacationed the week of April 20 through April 27 in Ohio. Late morning on Tuesday, April 25th, we drove to Cuyahoga Valley National Park. We made three stops in the park.
Our first stop was at the Beaver Marsh. We parked at the Ira Trailhead and followed the short connecting path to the Towpath Trail and turned left. We headed north for 0.25 miles to reach the boardwalk. We saw Canada Geese, turtles, red-wing blackbirds, tree swallows and grackles. There was excitement at the marsh, owing to the fact that Canada Geese are territorial.
Territorial Canada Geese entertained us, while at the Beaver Marsh.
My next blog post will be about our last two stops in Cuyahoga Valley National Park.
On Friday, March 3, after we had packed up the car, we went to breakfast at a nearby Eggs Up Grill. Bob ordered steak and eggs with a fruit cup and garlic toast. I ordered a Red, White and Blue Waffle with bacon. My waffle came with strawberries, bananas and blueberries with whipped topping. Breakfast was delicious.
After breakfast we drove to Murrells Inlet and walked the MarshWalk. I photographed several feathered friends.
From Murrells Inlet we drove to One Ocean Place in Garden City Beach. We are staying two nights with our friends Marge and Neil in their oceanfront condo on the 10th floor. We spent the remainder of the morning and afternoon conversing amongst ourselves, reading, napping and, in general, just enjoying each others’ company. Bob and Neil also played music together for a little while.
We also went for a walk on the beach.
We walked to The Conch Cafe for dinner. Marge and I ordered open-faced tuna salad melts. I had a cup of seafood chowder with my tuna salad. Bob ordered a crab cake sandwich. Neil ordered a grilled mahi sandwich.
In the evening we watched a movie on Netflix starring Meryl Streep called “The Laundromat”. The movie is based on a real-life story about insurance fraud.
Bob and I drove to our local Audubon Center, located in Jamestown NY, yesterday afternoon. We walked a little more than 2 miles. I surprised Bob when I chose to walk as far as we did. I surprised myself too!
If you click here, you will find a map of the trails at the Audubon Center. We began our walk on the blue Overlook Trail.
Leaving the Blue Heron Overlook we took a connecting trail to the yellow Big Pond Trail.
We took the yellow Big Pond Trail alongside the Bluebird Field.
What we didn’t see that I had hoped to see was a bluebird in the Bluebird Field.
Soon we came to a bridge.
Soon after crossing over Hemlock Bridge, we walked the orange Spatterdock Trail that circles Spatterdock Pond. We made our way to a tower that looks out on Big Pond via Spatterdock and a connecting trail. We walked along the top end of Spatterdock Pond.
Leaving the tower we used a connecting trail, Spatterdock Trail, and a small part of the Overlook Trail to make our way back to the parking lot.
No trip to the Audubon Center would be complete without visiting Liberty. So, we visited her enclosure on our way back to the parking lot.
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As we had done each morning, while on vacation in Virginia, we got up around 6:00 am on Easter Sunday, April 17th.
The temperature was around 50 degrees at sunrise. The sun did break through the clouds later in the morning and gave us sunny skies. It was a chilly day, though, with a high temperature of 58 degrees. The weather in Chincoteague was better than back in our hometown of Warren PA. At sunrise the temperature in Warren was 31 degrees, with some snow on the ground!
Late morning we drove to the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge and parked in the Wildlife Loop parking lot. We rode our bicycles from the parking lot, alongside Beach Road to the seashore.
Back on Beach Road, near Toms Cove Visitor Center, a few birds held our attention for a while.
The Snowy Egret was alone, until …
We returned to the parking lot via Black Duck Trail and the Wildlife Loop (with a detour to Swan Cove). The wind was fierce at times. We rode flat ground but, even in first gear, I felt as though I were pedaling up a hill. We rode 7.85 miles, and that was a wrap for riding our bicycles this vacation. The next day was chilly, windy and rainy.
Bob captured video with our GoPro7 camera, during our three bicycle rides. He prepared a video recap from our bicycling adventures.
Our lunch was ice cream at the Island Creamery. We visit the Island Creamery each time we vacation in Chincoteague. Bob had two scoops of Java Jolt in a cup. I had two scoops of ice cream in a cup too — one scoop of Cadbuy Crème Egg and one scoop of peanut butter cup.
After “lunch” we returned to Airbnb “Tranquil Shores” and relaxed.
Around 4:00 pm we prepared Easter dinner – grilled ham steak, macaroni and cheese, mixed vegetables and, for dessert, cheesecake.
Early evening we returned to Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge. We drove around the Wildlife Loop twice and drove to the seashore. We returned to “Tranquil Shores” via downtown Chincoteague. We stopped briefly at Chincoteague Veteran’s Memorial Park. This is a lovely waterfront park, located on Eastside Road. The Park has tennis courts, basketball courts, playground equipment, fishing/crabbing pier, ball field, boat ramp, skate park, pavilion and restrooms.
Back at “Tranquil Shores” we watched an episode of “Vera”, before going to bed.
We walked down to the edge of the wetlands this morning. There was an adult bald eagle sitting in the snag on which we have seen one or two eagles often throughout the day, since our arrival on Friday afternoon. The lighting wasn’t good in that direction, so I didn’t take any pictures of the eagle. I did take pictures of a dragonfly and turtles.
It is hot and humid, even at 9:00 am. When I returned to the house, I was drenched in sweat from my neck up.
About an hour later, while sitting in the living room, I saw an osprey flying over the wetlands. Good thing I got my camera and went out on the deck. The osprey provided a bit of excitement, at least photographically.
I stayed on the deck, camera in hand. Within seconds the osprey returned into view.
Late morning/early afternoon we drove to Cuyahoga Valley National Park, to the Ira Trailhead, and walked ¼ mile to Beaver Marsh. What a HOT and HUMID walk that was! We didn’t see much in the way of wildlife. We saw a great blue heron, snapping turtle (no picture), red wing blackbird and tree swallows.
I captured a few pictures of tree swallows, as we spent the most time watching their acrobatic flight.
We returned to our rental Airbnb and ate lunch. I ate a picnic lunch indoors, and Bob ate Ramen Noodles that he found in the kitchen.
A storm rolled through around 5:00 pm.
The temperature did drop 20 degrees, from 90 (with a heat index of 103) to 70. It didn’t take long, though, for the heat and humidity to return.
I got up at 6:00 am this morning. Bob was already up. I made a cup of tea and drank it on the deck, as I watched the sun rise and listened to the birds singing.
Bob went for a bicycle ride. I didn’t see him leave, as I did yesterday. He rode the same trail as yesterday but in the opposite direction. Bob rode as far as Brandywine Falls (the top of the falls) and back, for a total of 12 miles.
Later in the morning we drove to Kendall Lake in Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Kendall Lake is a manmade lake that was created by the Civilian Conservation Corps in 1935. It is the largest lake in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. We hiked the 1 mile trail around the lake. The terrain varies with some stairs to climb, however the loop trail was fairly flat and not too challenging.
Leaving Kendall Lake, we attempted to go to Brandywine Falls but the parking lot was full. A sign said to try again after 5:00 pm. We went to the new Cuyahoga Valley National Park visitor center instead. Stay tuned! I will publish a new blog post soon about our visit to the visitor center.
I got up for the day at 5:45 am, as Bob was leaving for a bicycle ride. Bob rode a portion of the Bike and Hike Trail. He reached the trail by bicycling neighborhood streets across from our rental Airbnb. He got on the trail near the Bridgewater Blvd-Nottingham Gate Blvd-Terex Road intersections. He rode as far south as Bow Wow Beach. Bob said he rode 10 miles total.
While Bob was bicycling, I sat for a short time on the deck enjoying the view and birdsong.
We ate breakfast, after Bob returned from his bicycle ride. Bob had scrambled eggs and orange juice. I had orange juice and instant oatmeal.
We added another 10.15 miles to Bob’s total bicycle miles. We drove to Cuyahoga Valley National Park and rode the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail (Please click on link!) from the Ira Trailhead to Peninsula and back.
After our bicycle ride, we stayed in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park and drove to Kendall Lake.
There is a 1-mile trail around Kendall Lake. We hope to walk the trail another day.
Before returning to our rental Airbnb, we drove to Walmart and picked up a few more grocery items.
We stayed “home” for rest of the afternoon and evening and enjoyed the beauty of our rental Airbnb and its grounds. We walked down to the pond to check out the view of the pond from that vantage point.
Later in the afternoon I captured photographs of songbirds and eagles. I photographed the songbirds and eagles from the comfort of our deck.
In addition to two adult eagles, we have seen two juvenile eagles as well. The eagles are way, way out in the pond. The pictures of the eagles were taken with a camera lens having an effective focal length of 1200mm. The pictures are heavily cropped.
Tonight’s dinner was stuffed green peppers with baked potatoes.
We enjoyed a colorful sunset, before going to bed.