Saturday, October 9, 2010

The sun still shines in Rhode Island

Another gorgeous day. We almost rented bikes to explore until our hotel hostess talked us into driving to First, Second and Third Beach roads so we could hike more once there. Something very elemental about these Rhode Islanders. Who names their beaches one, two, three? Cracks me up. Once on the road we stopped at Purgatory Chasm and hiked up the rocky point to a spectacular view of a beautiful bay filled with surfers (surprise, tiny waves). Unexpected was the deep narrow ravine we almost missed. It turned up as we crossed a small wooden bridge towards the sea. Whoa! There it was. Not sure why it's called Purgatory Chasm, but it's worth a visit.

Then to the Sachuest Point Wildlife Refuge for another hike. Not much wildlife on the trail, but some nice cormorants and gulls hanging out on the rocks just off shore. A better hike followed at the Norman Bird Sanctuary on 3rd Beach Road, a natural sequence. This one has great trails through light woods with occasional drop dead gorgeous views of the coast and the mansions across the bay. Felt like fall, leaves starting to turn, acorns covering the ground. Not a lot of birds in the sanctuary, but we didn't care. Did see two snakes! That's more than either of us have ever seen on any hike ever.

Out of the corner of my eye - the sun glinting off the water in the port just before sunset. Unexpected - Purgatory Chasm and snakes on the trail at the Norman Bird Santuary. Joy - found over coffee doing the crossword puzzle in the garden off the gazebo at our hotel.

And Stanford just beat USC with a field goal in the last 4 seconds!

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