Views of the Neighborhood – Charlies Pasture

We have always like to visit Charlies Pasture nature preserve. The last time we were here the Hurricane damage prevented us from entering. There are still no cars allowed but we took a walk past the gate to see how the park fared in the hurricane.

Charley's Pasture

Here is the locked main gate.

You can see the hurricane-damaged sea wall. Those are mothballed drilling rigs in the background

A view of the seawall and the road. Quite a lot of damage.

Another view to give you some perspective.

While we were walking a family of dolphins came up to the seawall. This is the male. It was quite exciting to see them so close to the shore.

I asked how he was doing and he didn’t answer.

He’s starting his dive.

There are a mother and baby in the background as well as the male who is in the foreground

This is the mother and baby. The baby is a half a stroke ahead of the mother.

To give you an idea of the storm power this sea wall used to run all the way across that body of water

A shot showing the breach.

One last shot of papa. Notice the pelican stays pretty close. The dolphin stirs up the fish population, and the pelican is standing by to catch a hapless fish fleeing.


  1. Great pictures, John. The concrete that was tossed around really shows the tremendous force of wind and water. —- Suzanne

    1. Those slabs were four by five feet. No telling how much they weighed. Thanks, Suzanne.

      1. That’s scary. It must make you glad you were nowhere near when it hit. The state did a fantastic job of getting people to evacuate. —- Suzanne

      2. Yes we were ordered out. Thak heavens. Thank you. 😀

      3. Happy Father’s Day, John! 🙂 — Suzanne

      4. Thak you so much, Suzanne. 😀

  2. A civil engineer (oxymoron?) once told me that his profession was ‘harnessing the great forces of nature’. To him, I say ‘look and learn’.

    1. Excellent comment, Keith. Beggng nature to help might be a better statement for the engineer. Thanks. A Happy American Father’s Day to you.

      1. Many thanks, John. And a happy French Fathers’ Day to you, too. I never could understand why Fathers’ Day is common, whilst Mother’s Day differs between France, UK and USA.

      2. Seems strainge doesn’t it?

  3. Gwen Plano · ·

    Stunning photos, John. I just looked at your blog of July 30, 2017, to view pre-Harvey. Those photos and your current ones make for a powerful story. Slowly but surely, recovery…

    1. If the dolphins hadn’t shown up I was going to run the before and after. I decided that the joy of those animals said recovery like no other words. Thanks, Gwen.

  4. Beautiful photos, John. Here’s to a quite hurricane season this year. Happy Father’s Day!

    1. Thank you, Jill. I hope you enjoy it as well.

  5. Amazing photos!

    1. Thank you, Marc. Was a beautiful day. 😀

  6. I love that you got to see the dolphins! And as for that wall, Mother Nature don’t play.

    1. Mother plays pretty rough when she does. Thanks, Marc.

      1. And Happy Fathers Day to You!

      2. Happy Father’s Day to you Marc. I hope you had a good one.

      3. It was indeed! Thank you sir!

  7. I’d never heard of Charlie’s Pasture. Now, I’ve read a bit about its history, and see that it began developing after I stopped coming down that way. Like some of our refuges and preserves, it suffered mightily under the forces of the storm, but I see there’s a plan for restoration, and I’m glad to see these photos of the progress. And what a wonderful place to visit!

    1. Thank you, Linda. It is a place where you can take time to think and contemplate nature. It is so quiet you have little distraction. Also, as you can see some unexpected surprises.

  8. Takes a while to recover from a hurricane. Hope they can fix that sea wall.

    1. Loos like a total rebuild. Maybe some day.

      1. Boardwalks and shoreline structures were like that around here after Sandy. In fact, the aquarium on the coast is finally finishing its repairs in two weeks.

      2. Wow. That was six years ago. Amazing

  9. I like the tag-team effort of the dolphin and pelican. Nature works in funny ways. Speaking of nature, wow! That sea wall looks like it was pretty substantial. I was shocked to see the slabs upended but I was amazed to see such a big section just missing, I hope you guys get the year off with respect to storms.

    1. I hope we get a year off as well. About those slabs. We asked outselves, “Where did they go?”

  10. Amazing pictures, John. The beauty and force of nature captured in the same shot. Thanks for sharing. Happy Father’s Day! 🙂

    1. Thank you, Natalie. 😀

  11. Thanks for the view, John. The Dolphins are totally awesome! I love how they stay in their family pods. It will take years to repair the storm damage. Even though the world has forgotten, the damage remains.

    1. So true, Jan. We live with it every day.

  12. John, incredible sea wall photos. I had no idea the damage to such a substantial structure. Good to learn what ocean storms are capable of. The pelican and dolphin collaboration a nice shift. Glad you were there for photos. Happy Father’s Day on this beautiful Sunday. 💐 Christine

    1. Thank you, Christine. It was a beautiful day.

  13. First I was sad to see the damage, but the dolphin(s)! Are they closer because there are fewer people now?

    1. Hard to say. I think it was an opportunity for them to catch some fish so they took it.

      1. Awesome photos. My daughter-in-law got a pic out her window, a faraway shot, of a whale just as it jumped out of the ocean :).

      2. I would be very excited to capture that shot. 😀

      3. She was pretty excited!

  14. Awesome example of the power of nature. That pelican is pretty clever.

    1. He is. Thanks, Craig.

  15. Beautiful photos. The concrete that was washed away is difficult to fathom. Your photo helps to realize the power of Mother Nature.

    1. Thank you, Jennie. It is a sight to behold.

  16. Oh, this restful visit was just what I needed on a hectic Monday morning, John — thank you for letting me tag along! Those uneven concrete slabs bring back the horror of when I stubbed my foot on an uneven sidewalk and pitched forward, breaking two ribs. Hard to realize how much power water holds during a hurricane!

  17. The power of Mother Nature, John. I hope they repair the seawall soon so the preserve can reopen. I wonder if the wildlife wonders where everybody went?

    1. I’m sure the widlife is pretty happy with the solitude.

  18. The dolphin might not have answered, but at least he posed for a picture.

    1. It was very cool. Thanks, Audrey.

  19. Beautiful walk along the damaged sea wall John. The color of the sea is just gorgeous there.

    I hope this hurricane season is a mild one for all!

    1. Me too. Thanks, Deborah

      1. He-Man and I are going to visit my Mom and Step-father in September…her only caution for visiting then…It’s hurricane season so be prepared! We get it. Our whole vacation could be ruined and hiding or running to another state to avoid a hurricane, but I’ll be doing it with my Mom so it’s okay.

        It’s been over a year since I’ve seen her so I’ll risk it. 😊

      2. The nice thing (if there is a nice thing) about a hurricane is you get plenty of warning to get out. Thanks, Deborah.

      3. My mom said after the Hurricane last year that given the choice between Earthquakes and Hurricanes she’d pick Hurricanes b/c there’s enough warning to get out of danger.

      4. I have to agree although I lived in Sonoma and our house was built in the 40’s. We had a few rollers but not even a crack in the plaster.

      5. That was house built to last! Mom and I were both living here in 89 and both our homes had cracks in the plaster, and more.

  20. Beauty and sadness at the same time. Are they planning to reconstruct as it was before the hurricane?

    1. It will take a long time since the reserve is not on the high list of projects needing to get done.

  21. Thanks for sharing your views with us, John. That seawall must have met the fury of the hurricane head-on. It’s scary how powerful storms can be. I’ve witnessed the damage of both hurricanes and tornadoes. The damage from both is heartbreaking. I loved the photos of the dolphins. They are so much fun to watch, and so are the pelicans.

    1. Thank you, Michelle. The storm was very powerful. You have to wonder where the concrete went. The dolphins were a treat.

      1. If you find out, you’ll have to share.

      2. I will for sure. 😀

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