2022-03-31 Thursday In Coos Bay

Pigeon Guillemot - Cepphus columba
I asked for, and was given permission to photograph from a private dock on Coos Bay owned by a boat repair facility. There, I spent a half hour with Pigeon Guillemots.
Horned Grebe - Podiceps auritus
Horned Grebes were good at finding food as they foraged in the close company of Surf and White-Winged Scoters just off Coos Bay’s South Jetty.

The “Check Engine” light on the RV came on yesterday, so I needed to look into it. There is a Dodge dealer in Coos Bay, but I stopped at a nearby Autozone after breakfast to get them to read the code so I could decide about how to proceed. The result was “low battery voltage”. Yesterday I left the key on accidentally after rolling down the side windows, and I know the battery discharged beyond its safe range. I tested the battery voltage and saw that both static voltage and voltage under load were OK. One way of resetting the codes is to disconnect the battery for a few minutes, then reconnect it. But I looked at the battery connection and there was a strange multi-wire connector I didn’t want to mess with, so I took the RV into the local Dodge dealer, and they used a high-tech OBD2 system to reset the error code for me. All it cost me was a little time. Later, on my way out of town, I stopped back at the Autozone and purchased a $100 tool to read and erase codes on my own. I hope I won’t need it, but you never know.

After my breakfast at the Kozy Kitchen, and my OBD2 adventure, I still had work to do on my images from my recent visit to Cape Arago. I prepped more RAW files than I needed to after I finished culling and embedding metadata yesterday, while I was parked by the South Jetty. Late in the day, I took a little time to wander out to the jetty with my camera. I walked out with my landscape camera, and when I reached the rock-lined wall, I saw scoters, grebes, and cormorants working the near side of the channel. I took the shots of the scenery I wanted, and then walked back to the van and brought back my bird lens. I wasn’t planning to add more images to my inventory today, but what the hell? Here I go again.

I tweaked my back yesterday climbing into the RV, and I’ve been feeling gimpy ever since. I hope I can get over it soon. Until then, I’ll up my calcium dosage and keep up with some gentle stretching.

When I was done with my image collecting yesterday, and heading back to the van, I crossed paths with a man out to enjoy an afternoon walk. We exchanged pleasantries, and the conversation evolved into a long discussion about this and that. Steve was his name. I learned he was a teacher who’d lived here a long time, but had gone to school in San Diego (Grossmont CC, and SDSU). He was contemplating his retirement, and was curious about my RV. We chatted for the best part of an hour before going our separate ways.

The subjects I photographed for this episode were Double-Crested Cormorant, Pelagic Cormorant, Pigeon Guillemot, Horned Grebe, and Surf Scoter. I originally believed some of the female Surf Scoters were White-Winged Scoters, but a kind birder with more experience than me straightened me out.

As I prepare this story, I’m camped roadside again, between Reedsport and Florence. I gathered more images today that I’ll share later. My back is improving and I’m slowly creeping up the coast.

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