Grand View Nature Preserve

We weren’t quite sure how well we’d feel on Sunday after our twenty-one and a half mile bike ride on Saturday. We woke up feeling great. It was a lovely day, so we headed out to Grand View Nature Reserve for a six mile beach walk.

These are the lighthouse ruins. I always enjoy learning a bit of history on our outings.

Isn’t this a beautiful shot of a sponge? By the way, Dirt Man was the photographer on this journey. His camera takes much better pictures than mine. And his skills are way better.

It appears that the ocean has come farther inland and taken out much of the marshland. You can see the erosion clearly in this picture. Some of the shoreline is more sandy and others more like this. They have built more dunes and jetties trying to protect the beach area. I heard one man ask someone why you weren’t allowed on the dunes except through access areas. Someone explained that the dunes are protecting the beach area. He seemed quite bent and didn’t understand how “one” person walking through would be a disturbance. Well, duh! If it’s allowed, then it won’t be just one person walking through!

This Lousiana Blue Heron did not seem to be disturbed by us. In fact, we got almost right up on him before he flew away.

Part of the dunes were flowered with goldenrod. The butterflies were abundant in that area.

There are many Cypress stumps and roots in the water where the water is now covering what was once marsh area. This one is embedded with barnacles and has a rope snagged on it. The rope could have been attached to a crabpot or been used as an anchor.

Wylie was thrilled to be on the beach with us. She romped and played with some other dogs. She loved roaming in and out of the water, and even chased a few things into the water and swam. She really had a good time…except when she got into some sand burs which got in between her paw pads. It was probably as painful for us to remove them as it was for her to have them there.

This wildlife preserve is actually a small island. It is a six mile walk to go from the trail through the marsh and circle the peninsula. It was a beautiful sunny day with a nice breeze. It was not strenuous. It was a peaceful and enjoyable hike. I must say it was quite a difference from my stressful bike ride the day before. I also must note that ride was only stressful because of sheer exhaustion. This walk was again one of those times that I felt a connection to what is so much larger than myself and unexplainable, except that I am included in the grand design of life.

37 thoughts on “Grand View Nature Preserve

  1. What a nice day and beach. I love lighthouses, so sad a hurricane destroyed it. We walked all over the State Fair today but not near six miles. I am in awe of your “skills”. I am sure you can’t wait for your Utah trip!

  2. Do you take rest stops during these hikes? I could walk six miles, I think, but I would need a relatively slow pace and rest stops. Oh, to be 20 years younger! Is where you’re going in Utah likely to have snow in November?

    Dirt Man’s photos are also wonderful.

    • We go at a pace that is comfortable for us and rest as needed…I tend to stop a lot to take pictures. It’s possible that it might snow when we’re in Utah…I guess we’ll need to be prepared.

  3. It’s funny, because just today I was talking with one of the ladies I work with who is originally from Virginia, and I was telling her about all the beautiful photos you share with us here on your blog, and I said to her, “Virginia is GORGEOUS!

    The more you share, the more I am in awe of the diverse terrain Virginia offers. Mountains, quaint little towns, beaches….it’s got everything.

    Loved looking at these photos, Suzi!

    Especially to the one of the coral sponge. Reminds me of my years on the beach in Florida.

    Thanks for sharing. Much enjoyed!


    • Virginia really does have everything, well almost. Dirt Man took some other sponge photos that were good as well. This one was brighter orange, and I liked that there was a shell in the sand beside it.

    • The length of the bike ride wasn’t what was so exhausting, but the fact that we were going through sand dunes and had to push our bikes much of the time…that was a horrendous workout!

  4. Nature is impressive ans spending time on the bike ride and beach hike I know you had to enjoy, the pictures are great and only make me want to visit your great state.

  5. Dirtman’s pics are great, but yours are always as good; don’t sell yourself short.
    I can’t wait to take Diski and Lulubelle to the beach, I can just imagine what sensory overload all those smells would be for a dog.

  6. I was digging it until the goldenrod. That stuff is the devil if you’re allergic because it grows like American Express. It’s everywhere you want to be.

  7. Did you just say 21 1/2 miles? I think I just peed myself.

    I love lighthouses and wish we had some here, but since there’s no ocean, I guess that would be ridiculous. A mountain lighthouse doesn’t have the same appeal.

  8. Why is it that a blue heron takes my breath away? That a a red tailed hawk are my favorite birds. But that heron…or the wing span. The beek (hey how do you spell beek?)…I’m just beside myself with the gorgeousness of it all.

    Well, orange is a fabulous color, but to capture the water droplets? I’m soaking it up. Thank you for drenching me in your life. I feel hydrated.

    And the cypress. Holy Cow! WaterWitch, I think I might need to visit. I’d love to be tangled in that mess of color, texture and layers of exhaustion.

    You are my zen inspiration of what life is sans kiddos. I think you love that Dirt Man of yours and the life the two of you are breathing in. Thank you for sharing that with us.

  9. Hi Suzicate…I just found you through bearyweather’s blog. Loving your photos and your hike! The blue heron is my favorite. What a great place you live in.

  10. Wow, your hubby definitely takes great pictures! And the part about the erosion made me a little sad. I read somewhere that the marshes in some parts of the country are eroding at an alarming rate. So sad!

  11. You always manage to find the details many of us would overlook. The rope tied to the stumps for instance…the textural differences and colors, oh Suzicate…I just love it all!

    Your hubs really is a remarkable photographer and I do so enjoy how you share the unspoiled world with us!

  12. (I’m a bit late getting through some posts)

    The pictures are lovely. I love blue Heron’s, I don’t know why. They are kind of funky looking. I imagined him posing for you (Dirt Man). He was letting you get close so he could get a good shot.

    I was so excited to see the butterfly in the picture.

    Thank you, as always, for taking us on your beautiful adventures.

  13. Beautiful photos of the Grandview Nature Preserve in Hampton. We were just there on 12/24/2011. We found some unusual items in the grass just at the edge of the beach near where the gravel road ends at the beach. We could not identify them – they were firm round, white, discs, about 1 inch high and often around 6 inches in diameter. Very even and regular in formation. Kind of like large biscuits but not dried jellyfish, nor sand dollars or sea biscuits. Maybe some kind of dried plant? Do you know what we saw there? thanks!

  14. Pingback: Grandview Nature Preserve (Hampton, Virginia) | Highway 17

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