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All is Well. Returning to Dewees after Florence

A week ago, I was in the middle of writing a leisurely post about how relieved we were NOT to have to pack up and evacuate for Florence when everything went awry with the forecasts and the governor ordered an evacuation. I’ll eventually finish that one, which explains all of the hurricane preparations we go through out here on Dewees, but for now, I want to express some gratitude about being home. Our hearts go out to our friends and colleagues who are still struggling with this monster storm. We are delighted to find the island relatively unscathed. Since I know there are folks out there with a yearning for some visuals, here you go:

It was so nice to be back on the island!

Dewees after Florence
Terry was taking down the Hurricane Flag

When we came past Huyler House pond, there were spoonbills hanging out on the raft

Dewees after Florence
Morning glories were in full bloom, covered with gulf fritillaries, cloudless sulfurs, and a zebra longwing!

When we got to Ancient Dunes, the walkway showed that there had been some pretty strong wind
Dewees, post Florence
And the wind was still in full force as we got to the beach:
Dewees after Florence
Looking north from Ancient Dunes
Dewees after Florence

The strong breezes carved the dunes and sand into some amazing patterns and textures:
[caption id="attachment_10810" align="aligncenter" width="1024"]Dewees after Florence This shell created a shelf where the wind carved around it.

More sand/wind sculpture

Clouds at Ancient Dunes

We had much larger waves than normal.

Dewees after Florence (beach)
The dunes were relatively unscathed, and some of them looked even bigger!

Osprey Walk was our next stop.
Dewees after Florence Osprey Walk
Looking north from Osprey Walk

As you can see, there was no sign of water intrusion into Lake Timicau.

From the main dock, we could see some large white birds out on the midden. Knowing that sometimes storms drop some unexpected guests by, we grabbed a big lens and some binoculars. Sure enough, the usual suspects of Oystercatchers, Cormorants, Pelicans, and Ruddy Turnstones were joined by a large flock (120) of White Pelicans. They will occasionally winter here, but this is certainly the largest flock we’ve seen, and the earliest we’ve seen it in the season.

We went a little closer to check it out:

And finally, we finished the day with this rainbow over the impoundment:

With a huge sign of relief and gratitude for the kindnesses of staff and neighbors, we turn in for the night.