Tag: elephant seals

Seeing Seals Saved By The Seashore

Seeing Seals Saved By The Seashore

We humans feel a kinship to marine mammals: Porpoises, dolphins, whales, seals, sea lions.

They’re a bit like us: Talkative, social,  solitary, inquisitive, active, and some times lazy beach bums.

And like us, they’re smart.

And like us, sometimes they become ill or are injured and need help.

Which is when we help them, just like we help each other. And just like we do with our human relatives, we visit them when they are in the hospital.

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Travel Photo Thursday: Seeing Seals by The Seashore

Travel Photo Thursday: Seeing Seals by The Seashore

Wpdms_usgs_photo_point_reyes_national_seashorePoint Reyes juts out into the Pacific Ocean along the west coast of the United States about thirty nautical miles north of San Francisco. (Wikipedia map.)

Since 1962, the Point has been within the boundaries of Point Reyes National Seashore, a federal reserve under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service.

In late winter and early fall, elephant seals are abundant along the ocean and in Drake’s Bay at the seashore. And those rescued at other areas of the California coast and rehabilitated by The Marine Mammal Center at its facility in the Marin Headlands section of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, are often released near Chimney Rock where Drake’s Bay meets the Pacific.

Every April, my Tuesday hiking group spends a day hiking along Drake’s Bay, and to and from the promontory that overlooks Chimney Rock.

Using a spotting scope and binoculars, we can eyeball elephant seals at a distance, as they lay hauled out under chalky cliffs that have been liked to those of Dover, England.

But we also see them “up close and personal” near the Life Saving Station farther up the bay.

Rain falling during the weeks prior to our visit often turns the hillsides bright with wildflowers.

But even though the rainy season is usually drawing to a close when we are at Chimney Rock, we maintain a lookout for storm clouds that can quickly rise high in the sky above us at any time.

(Click on an image to enlarge to full-size. Visit Budget Travelers Sandbox for more of this week’s Travel Photo Thursday shots.)

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