Beautiful California Coast and Wildlife
Blue water at Point Lobos State Reserve (SR), about 3 miles south of Carmel on California coast
Seals sunbathing on rocks in Point Lobos State Reserve
Beautiful California coast along Highway 1
著名的17 英里黄金海岸公路 是加州1號公路最美的一段精華。
Rocky shore along 17-mile scenic drive between Pacific Grove and Pebble Beach
Many seagulls in flight along 17-mile scenic drive
|We spent 3 days in February 2006 touring the beautiful mid-section of California coast along Highway 1. We
started at San Gregorio Beach (about 6 miles south of Half Moon Bay) and toured southward through Santa
Cruz, Monterey to Big Sur including Pescadero State Beach, Elkhorn Slough, Salinas River Wildlife Area, the
famous 17-Mile Scenic Drive and Point Lobos State Park. We saw two elephant seals at Año Nuevo State
Many fishing birds, cormorants, on bird rock along 17-mile scenic drive
Another view north from Point Lobos State Reserve. Endless gazing, and bird watching are favorite pastimes
at Point Lobos State Reserve.
Please see a movie of feeding frenzy of many sea lions, pelicans, gulls and whales feeding on a large school of
anchovies in Sea Lion Cove in Point Lobos State Preserve at:
Steller and California Sea Lion pups lounge on the beaches of Point Lobos waiting for mom to return from her
fishing. Spaniards named this peninsula for the bark of these precocious animals. "Lobos" means wolves in
Spanish, and the Sea Lion bark is loud. The Sea Lion is named wolf because they hunt in packs as shown in
the movie above.
Map: Click here for interactive Google Map showing the location of Point Lobos State Preserve
A sea lion with one flipper up in the bay Municipal Wharf in Santa Cruz
Several cormorants on the rock and several sea lions in water with their flippers up near the rock along
17-mile scenic drive
Cypress (柏 ) along 17-mile scenic drive
Elkhorn Slough (www.elkhornslough.org) is one of California's largest wetlands and part of a National
Estuarine Reserve located in central Monterey Bay, California, just a short trip from the Santa Cruz area and
the Monterey Peninsula. The wildlife rich reserve winds inland seven miles and provides an important feeding
and resting place for a fantastic variety of wildlife such as playful sea otters, curious harbor seals, and
hundreds of species of waterfowl and migratory shorebirds. It is one of the premier bird-watching sites in the
western United States.
It is at 1700 Elkhorn Road, Watsonville, CA 95076, Telephone: (831) 728-2822. Aerial photo and the map of
Elkhorn Slough are available at the following website:
We got on the 2-hour Elkhorn Slough Safari (Phone: 831-633-5555), which is a 27-foot pontoon river tour
boat, departing from Moss Landing, California to tour the Elkhorn Slough. Website of Elkhorn Slough Safari is:
Bixby Bridge on Highway 1 spanning Rainbow Canyon near Big Sur
Seals sunbathing on rocks
Two playful big birds, probably hawks, soaring near the coastal area
A seal in "banana" posture at Elkhorn Slough
Many cormorants at Moss Landing. Two of them are drying their wings by extending the wings out.
According to the tour boat captain, this cormorant is doing courting dance posture to attract a mate.
A colorful waterfowl, probably merganser, is taking off from the water
A group of fishing cormorants form a ring to corner a school of fish which are jumping in the middle of the ring.
Two egrets are also standing by ready to catch the fish.
A group of sea otters floating leisurely in Elkhorn Slough
A group of mergansers in Elkhorn Slough
Shorebirds with very long beak to dig into mud or sand in Elkhorn Slough
Concentration of very large flocks of birds where each tiny white dot on this picture is a bird in flight.
They are flying over the secluded coastal lagoon where Salinas River comes close to Monterey Bay.
But the exit into Monterey Bay is blocked by sand bank such that it becomes a long lagoon. This is in
Salinas River Wildlife Area, which is about 4 miles south of Elkhorn Slough.
Map: Click here to see Google Map showing Saline River Wildlife Area
Sunset viewed from Highway 1
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Several sea lions on a deck at Santa Cruz Wharf and many tourists are enjoying watching these sea lions.
We visited Santa Cruz again on August 13, 2012.
One of many pelicans flying on the bay at Santa Cruz. We seldom see pelican in New Jersey or along east
coast USA. Therefore, it is quite interesting to me to see many pelicans along California coast.
Lighthouse Point at Santa Cruz on the jagged cliffs and beautiful bluffs as viewed west from the Municipal
Wharf of Santa Cruz. It is less than one mile from the Wharf. Lighthouse Point is also known as Point Santa
Cruz. This area forms the northern boundary of Monterey Bay. A long stretch of road (West Cliff Drive) follows
the cliff around the park, and there is a large paved sidewalk with a fence following the cliff as well. You can
see seals, sea lions and otters among the kelp beds in the ocean. You can walk along the edge of the coast
and listen to the surf crash on the rocks below.
Get even closer to the Lighthouse Point for closer view of surfers enjoying the waves. Perched on the cliffs
of Santa Cruz overlooking the Pacific Ocean is the Lighthouse Point and Lighthouse Field State Park.
Many surfers enjoying the waves on the Steamer Lane. Legend has it that the name emanated from the
steamships that navigated around the huge surf at Third Reef before turning into the bay of Santa Cruz.
During the '30s, it's said that early surfers saw giant waves breaking out in the steamship lane, so they called
it Steamer Lane.
情， 心曠神怡， 這裡遊人如織，很是熱鬧。
Many visitors are naturally attracted to the Lighthouse Point overlooking internationally renowned surfing
hotspot, Steamer Lane, to watch the waves and many surfers in action close up. The air is fresh and crisp.
Just a lovely location.
From the Lighthouse Point Lookout or from the promenade along West Cliff Drive between the Santa Cruz
Wharf and Lighthouse Point, many visitors get drawn to the edge of the cliff where they can watch not only
waves and surfers, but also beautiful coast line and many sea lions and fishing birds, cormorants, on the
offshore rock about 50 feet off shore.
Mark Abbott Memorial Lighthouse at Lighthouse Point on West Cliff Drive. The Santa Cruz Surfing Museum is
in this lighthouse. This museum has photographs, surfboards, and other interesting items tracing over 100
years of surfing history in Santa Cruz. The lighthouse surfing museum pays homage to three Hawaiian
Princes who introduced surfing to the Santa Cruz area.
Visitors also see many pelicans flying just above the water surface on the Bay of Santa Cruz.
Sometimes, these pelicans fly just over your head.
Sometimes fly a little bit higher.
Sometimes, the pelican is standing on the roof on Santa Cruz Wharf.
Sometimes these pelicans are floating on the water.
Sometimes these pelicans are flying high in a formation.
We also saw some actions on the water surface on the Bay of Santa Cruz. It seemed that some predators,
might be sea lions, were chasing and driving school of prey fish to the surface that attracted several
seabirds to converge in that local area to snatch fish from the surface. In this picture, it seemed that a sea
lion lunged its head and neck out of water with a splash and a fish in its mouth.
Several cormorants flying just above water surface and kelp bed of Bay of Santa Cruz.
Many visitors stroll along the lovely sidewalk that is fenced lining the bluffs, enjoying beautiful views of
cascading rocks, splashing tides, and blue ocean. On a clear day you can see Monterey from here.
A sweeping view at Santa Cruz. It's a breathtaking site with a breathtaking view.
We enjoyed very much this second tour of Santa Cruz. It is a pretty awesome place with breathtaking view
of the ocean. It's absolutely beautiful. Just stand at the top of the cliffs, looking out onto the eternal expanse
of the blue Pacific Ocean, soak up the sun, feel the breeze. Watch great waves, many surfers trying to catch
that perfect wave, plus sea lions, pelicans, cormorants, gulls and other sea birds in all kinds of interesting
actions. It is outdoor recreation at its finest and the perfect spot to take it all in. Whenever I think of this
place I am overcome with joy.
It is fun to watch the surfers trying to catch that perfect wave. It is amazing to be so close to the surfing