|Pigeon Point Lighthouse on California Coast
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Two views of the picturesque Pigeon Point Lighthouse on a small peninsula off Highway 1 on California Coast.
It is located at 210 Pigeon Point Road, Highway 1, Pescadero, CA 94060 near the junction of Highway 1 and
Pigeon Point Road. It is 20 miles south of Half Moon Bay and 50 miles south of San Francisco.
We came here on July 4, 2017, the national holiday. It was a glorious beautiful sunny day with blue sky.
Perched on a cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean on the central California coast, the 115-foot Pigeon Point
Lighthouse is the tallest lighthouse on the West Coast of the United States.
This headland, and hence the lighthouse, took its name from the ship, Carrier Pigeon, that wrecked here in
Perpetually covered in dense fog that obscures visibility, this coastal site was in dire need of a lighthouse when
the Pigeon Point Lighthouse was built in 1871 after a series of shipwrecks.
Map: Click here for interactive Google Map showing location of the Pigeon Point Lighthouse and its small
Gorgeous panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean with rocky reefs and salty breeze as viewed from the deck
and the boardwalk behind the fog signal building (museum) near the base of the lighthouse.
The bay south of the lighthouse peninsula as viewed from the boardwalk behind the lighthouse. During the
spring migration season of whales and birds, this boardwalk will have big crowd of whale watchers and bird
The rocky shoreline north of Pigeon Point Lighthouse.
One of several harbor seals enjoying sunbathing on the rocky reef behind the lighthouse.
Several seals sunbathing on the rocky reef.
The coastal areas surrounding Pigeon Point Lighthouse are rich with life. Marine mammals, such as seals and
whales, can be seen from shore as they pass by beyond the surf. The intertidal zone along this part of the
coast, particularly in the rocky reefs that flank the lighthouse, contains a diverse and numerous varieties of
plant and animal life.
This is my first visit of Pigeon Point Lighthouse. It is a practice run for me to get familiar with this area. I will
be back again in the spring season for whale watching from shore and for bird watching.
There are more than 20,000 gray whales migrating along west coast of North America. The baby gray whales
are born in the winter season in the warm water of Baja California.
From March through May, on their spring migration journey from Baja California to Alaska, female gray whales
bring their calves into the bay south of the lighthouse. They can be easily seen, from the boardwalk, swimming
just beyond this rocky reef as they continue north.
March is the very, very beginning of the season of grey whale northward migration. April will most likely have
more grey whale activity, and May is considered the peak of grey whale migration by many ecologists.
The spring migration (March to May) is the best time for whale watching from the boardwalk and the deck
here, partly because the weather is better, but mostly because the migrating mother gray whales come closer
in towards the shore so their babies are better protected to avoid being attacked and eaten by a pack of killer
whales or by great white sharks. Pods of gray whales also often nestle in the tame coves to feed their young
The deck and the boardwalk here are ideal for watching these gray whales in action near the shore because
the headland (i.e., the Pigeon Point peninsula) jutting out into the ocean such that the whale watchers on the
shore can get closer to the migrating whales as shown on the Google Map listed above. The headland (bluff)
provides unobstructed views of the ocean and everything around you.
The prime time of the year for bird watching here is also during spring migration (March-May) when thousands
of northbound loons, scoters, Brant, cormorants, shearwaters, gulls, terns and shorebirds pass this
So, I will come here again in the spring season to enjoy whale watching and bird watching.
One example of whale watching from Pigeon Point in April can be seen in the video in the following YouTube
Beautiful wild flowers in the Pigeon Point Lighthouse area.
The shoreline south of the Pigeon Point Lighthouse.
Breathtaking view of the ocean.
When we were driving on Highway 1 going south from Half Moon Bay to Pigeon Point Lighthouse, there are
several nice sandy beaches between the rocky shores and many people come here to enjoy the beach and
ocean on the July 4th holiday.
These beaches were so popular on the July 4 holiday that all the parking lots near the beaches were full. Many
visitors had to park on the roadside of Highway 1.
Beautiful roadside wild flowers along Highway 1.
Some people are fishing near the lighthouse.
A view from Highway 1.
Upper Crystal Springs Reservoir as viewed from the Vista Point at the junction of Highway 92 and Skyline
Blvd (Highway 35), Redwood City, California. The clean water in this reservoir comes from Yosemite National
Park through 160 miles of Hetch Hetchy Aqueduct.
This is on our way back to Fremont in San Francisco Bay area coming back from Pigeon Point Lighthouse.
San Francisco Bay and eastern part of San Mateo Bridge as viewed from Highway 92 near the hill top in San
Mateo. We were driving from Pigeon Point Lighthouse through Half Moon Bay on our way to go back to
Fremont on east side of San Francisco Bay.
Eastern part of San Mateo Bridge over San Francisco Bay as viewed from western higher part of San Mateo
Bridge going east. I was on front passenger seat to take this picture.
Many sunbathing seals.
Beautiful wild flowers, sunny day and salty sea breeze. What a nice day to be out here on the seashore!
San Francisco Bay has abundant of fish which attract many fishing birds such as cormorants. After they hunt
and eat many fish, they are not hungry anymore, then many cormorants perch at the bases of many towers of
electric power line in parallel with the San Mateo Bridge. Dumbarton Bridge is visible at some distance away
from the San Mateo Bridge.
Crystal Springs Reservoir as viewed from of Highway 92.
Many cormorants perch at one of many towers of electric power line in parallel with the San Mateo Bridge.
July 4th Fireworks at Many Cities and Towns along San Francisco Bay
San Francisco Bay has 275 miles of shoreline and 7.68 million people. There are many cities and towns along
the San Francisco Bay. On the evening of July 4, 2017, many fireworks were going on in many cities and
towns along San Francisco Bay. After coming back from Pigeon Point, I was in a house on Antelope Hill in
Fremont in east side of San Francisco Bay. On the Antelope Hill with magnificent panoramic night view, I
enjoyed watching through a window many fireworks going on at a substantial distance away. I took a movie of
many fireworks as shown in the following YouTube website:
Western part of San Mateo Bridge.
Another view of the eastern Part of San Mateo Bridge over San Francisco Bay.
San Mateo Bridge as viewed from Highway 92 in San Mateo.