Saturday, 28 November 2015

The Sea, Otherwise

We’ve just discovered that enjoying the sea doesn’t have to stop when the boat is put up for the winter.  For the first time since moving to the Morbihan Gulf in Brittany, we went clam digging with some other hibernating sailors.  It was a cool drizzly day and I hesitated taking my camera, thinking that the photos would only show grey tones (which is a way of avoiding the use of the now ruined phrase “shades of gray”).  I was pleasantly surprised with both the subtle colors and textures of the shoreline as well as the three handfuls of clams we found.  The Brent geese were on their post-nuptial migration from Scandinavia to their wintering grounds, which range from Brittany down to the Arcachon basin near Bordeaux depending on winter conditions.  My guide book says they rarely fly in V-shapes, but we were given quite a show…which was particularly tricky to catch with my camera in the rain. This little outing opened our eyes to new ways of enjoying the sea in winter, and we are eagerly awaiting the next large tidal coefficients to try our hand at fishing for razor clams.

The road to Tascon island, only passable at low tide.

Who says Brent Geese don't migrate in V-formations? 

The mighty hunter.


Yia Yia Thompson said...

I think the mighty hunter should get a longer rake for the upcoming winter clamming - razors, littlenecks (hey, that's what we call them), and others of similar ilk. Looks like he's using a garden tool, no? Great pics and writing - as usual.

Sailing Mareda said...

Ha ! You're watching too closely ! Our shell fishing tools were put up warm and dry on the boat for the winter (morons). When we were invited to go dig clams, we had to resort to garden tools. But the length of the rake is actually okay. If you use a rake that's too long (and better for your back) you're so far away from the sand that you often miss seeing the clams. As we get older, we have to choose: bad back or bad eyes?!

Yia Yia Thompson said...

Well just wait til you get to our (respective) ages; we're now stuck with choosing between bad back/eyes/muscles and clams. Not, fwiw, that I'd eat any that were dug from around here. Never know what's in the sand . . . We've just had a Massachusetts warning that says striped bass from MA waters has a PCB content that makes it unsafe to eat. Sigh. No other fish mentioned but that's probably only because no others were tested. Welcome to overpopulation!