Watching Gray Whales from the Point Reyes Lighthouse

The month of March is a great time to see the last straggling southbound Pacific gray whales headed towards Mexico, and the first northbound whales, headed back to Alaska.

Each year gray whales migrate as much as 12,000 miles up and down the west coast of the United States between their summer feeding grounds in Arctic waters, and the warm and protected calving lagoons in Baja California, Mexico.

At Point Reyes National Seashore, we see the majority of southbound whales passing by in January and the majority of northbound whales passing by in March!


Supermoon Lunar Eclipse 2015

Last week was the supermoon lunar eclipse. The moon was at its perigee, the closest it gets to the earth, and appeared 14% larger. Then it slipped into the shadow of the earth and took on an eerie red-orange color. 

I saw it from beautiful Lassen Volcanic National Park and took some photos.

Hikers climbed Lassen Peak at dusk to see the supermoon.

We looked at the moon through a telescope.

And the Milky Way looked pretty spectacular.



Pinecones are fascinating and I've been drawing inspiration from them.  (And drawing them, too.) These three are Ponderosa and Jeffery pinecones.

Ponderosas have spines that point out in a "J" shape, and Jeffery pines have spines that point downwards, so you can tell them apart by rememering prickly ponderosa  and gentle jeffery. Otherwise the trees look really similar.

A photo posted by Gregory Purifoy (@g_foy) on

A photo posted by Gregory Purifoy (@g_foy) on

A photo posted by Gregory Purifoy (@g_foy) on