Missed the moon but caught a sunset

From my driveway in late January. Saw this when I got home and thought it would be cool to try and get the moon coming up over Tampa the next night.

Tampa across the bridge. No moon coming up so I headed into Tampa.

I was hoping to get a shot of the big super blue blood moon rising above the Tampa skyline in late January so I brought my camera and headed over to a tall parking garage just off the bridge after work. On the moon side there was a cloud bank so i wasn’t going to get a shot of the moon just over the city.

I turned around and walked over to the other side of the parking garage and saw the above. A plane coming in for a landing near the Tampa airport just as the sun was going down. I stood for a while watching the planes come in. It was a beautiful cool night.

Sun’s all gone. Sometimes when life gives you lemons, turn around.

SkyWatch Friday

Pretty on Sarasota bay.

The Selby Gardens in Sarasota sits right on the bay. It was a warm beautiful morning in late November when I was there for the first time with my sister.

It’s a small botanical gardens and a bit far from my home in Tampa. Not sure if I will get down here again soon. My favorite part was the conservatory that had a lot of orchids. We happened to be there during an orchid exhibit which was pretty cool.

SkyWatch Friday

Storm moving in on Tampa Bay

These were all taken with my phone on my walk across the pedestrian bridge across north Tampa Bay. It was late afternoon on a Sunday.  I was lucky the storm didn’t really move directly towards the bridge and I got a long walk in.  The sun was out on the other side of the bridge. Little disappointed there was no rainbow.

SkyWatch Friday

Over the river and through the woods….

to Daytona Beach we go. On the east coast of Florida. This was our first trip and we were staying over for one night to visit friends who were visiting for the week from Georgia.

The view from our room on the 14th floor. I zoomed in with my phone on the last one.  Our hotel was next door to a small amusement park.

We met up with our friends who were staying near the Ponce Inlet and spent some time walking around the lighthouse before heading to dinner.

We had dinner at a fun little restaurant next to the lighthouse that was right on the water.

View from our table.

It was a quick short trip to have dinner with our friends. I was traveling light so all of the above were taken with my phone.

SkyWatch Friday

Being a tourist on the beach

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Clearwater Beach sure has changed since we moved down to the area almost 15 years ago. The beach was still mostly Mom & Pop motels and now it’s all high-rise hotels and condos. Traffic and parking are insane so we rarely go over there.  On Christmas afternoon we wanted to get out for a walk so we went to Sand Key beach which is just across the bridge from Clearwater beach. It was such a beautiful day that all of the beaches were crowded. All of the above were taken from Sand Key Park looking across at Clearwater beach and downtown Clearwater.

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A few of the fun finds at the beach.

SkyWatch Friday

Chesnut Park in late September.

Downy or Hairy? I’m going with Downy since her beak looks a little longer and Hairys are pretty rare here.

Yellow warbler. This was the most exciting bird of the day.

Injured butterfly.

I arrived at the park, parked my car, got out and walked around to the other side and started to get all of my camera gear out. I hear a noise behind me and when I turn around, this lady was standing there watching me. I turned around with my camera and she just went back to her grazing. Some of the deer are pretty skittish so I was surprised that she just ignored me.

A small bridge deep in the woods.

Another quiet morning at Chesnut Park. I saw lots of osprey, titmouse and carolina wrens. Even the yellow warbler is fairly common. There’s a small trickle of fall migrants coming through but it’s hit or miss and I seem to be missing mostly. At this point it was the end of September and I was reading on the local boards that a few were passing through but work kept getting in way. It was still a nice morning out. I did meet a retired man named Joe who volunteers for the Audubon of Florida’s Eagle Watch program. We had met briefly before at one of the local Eagle Watch presentations. When I told him that I lived near the park, he told me about a great eagle’s nest that was close by my house to keep an eye on this winter. I found the nest on the way home so I’ll keep you posted later this year. Most of the eagles have returned to the area for the winter but it’s hard to find them since they aren’t spending a lot of time on their nest yet.

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