Happy Groundhog Day, it’s time to picnic

P1240093.JPGBarbara soaks up the sun on our picnic rock at Point Colville.

IMG_7955PUNXSUTAWNEY PHIL SAYS SPRING IS COMING EARLY, though I suspect he’s just trying to cheer up everybody who’s been caught in the Arctic Vortex, or Wintermageddon, or Freeze-aroni, or whatever they’ve been calling it.

Barbara and I celebrate this time of year with an annual winter picnic, which we enjoyed a couple days ago at Point Colville on Lopez Island.

Our vintage runabout, the WeLike, is running again, thanks to my installation of new fuel filters, including a Racor prefilter system similar to what we’ve had on our sailboat for years. Though this engine is gas and the sailboat has diesel, I still go by what I learned many moons ago in my Portland Community College marine-diesel repair class (for readers of James Herriot, I call this my two weeks with Professor Malleson): When an engine stops running,  first check the fuel, then check the fuel, then check the fuel again.

P1240111.JPGCastle Island, center left, from Point Colville. Rumor has it puffins hang out there.

Anyway, the boat got us to the Hunter Bay dock on Lopez and we enjoyed the short hike through old-growth firs to the rocky balds of Point Colville, part of San Juan Islands National Monument. The point provides many perfect “sitting rocks” for a picnic with a broad view of the Strait of Juan de Fuca, the Olympic Range and some snowy, jagged peaks of the Cascades.P1240099.JPGName those peaks: Can you help me identify these snowy Cascade peaks seen looking east from Lopez Island? I’m guessing maybe White Chuck, maybe Glacier Peak, maybe…?

We munched Barbara’s “salad sandwiches” (an Australian thing, with sliced beets, tomatoes, lettuce and a bit of vegan cheese) and basked in the bright winter sun, which felt pretty good on the old bones this time of year.

Paraphrasing Bill Murray in one of our favorite movies, which we will watch (again) tonight (possibly several times): “Yep, spring is coming early, just about March 21.” cropped-1-anchor.jpg

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