Moira (Chicago), Julia (Chicago), Marjorie (Naples, FL)

Julia, a wonderful friend who lives in Chicago, is visiting her artist sister Marjorie in Naples for a few days to get out of the cold (I’m sorry it’s not warmer!). I’m so happy they made a day trip up to Sanibel with their friend Moira to do some shelling with me. Since I scoped out the beaches yesterday, I knew just where to take them….West Gulf Drive.

It was a gorgeous day. Yes, it was still chilly (50 s) and the wind was making it even chillier (15-20 mph gusts) on the beach but that didn’t keep us out of the water to snag up a couple of 7″ WHELKS and lots of smaller ones, beautiful orange TULIPS, a bright orange HORSE CONCH, OLIVES, big MUREXES and FIGHTING CONCHS.

Julia with "the backhoe"

Since the waves were pretty rough and the bigger stuff was hard to get in the surf, I brought out the big guns…..Clark’s shelling basket “the shelling backhoe”. I’m not the expert on using this tool but Julia wanted to try so I gave her some tips and let her have a go at it. She did great! She brought in a few keepers and looked like a pro. She’s been shelling with us many times….even when we lived in Coconut Grove years ago and boated to the upper keys. She’s hooked. I think Marjorie and Moira will be now too.

I wanted to take them to the Lighthouse beach but we just ran out of time. Once we got to West Gulf Drive, we just couldn’t pull ourselves away. Once we left and we were going through our finds, Moira showed us that she found a FLAT SCALLOP!  Great find!

You’ve got to check out Marjorie’s website- you’re not going to believe it. She’s going to be teaching a workshop at Big Arts on Sanibel in March.

West Gulf #3