I climbed down from 7000 ft elevation, to camp on the beach. It was starting to get down t0 32dgs at night in the San Bernardino Mtns, and the beach would be more temperate. And to my delight, I found a treat waiting for me on the Coast. I discovered a park that was a wilderness habitat area. It boasted sanctuary for: Raptors, Snowy Plovers, and Monarchs (and though not posted, hummingbirds). The area was a meadow with forests of tall Eucalyptus trees. There was a sign announcing the Monarch Habitat area, and I looked for them there. Monarchs did not hang out around the sign; instead I observed them high up in the trees, swooping and gliding. One came down close to me, and surprised me just how big they were. This was one of the groves where West Coast Monarchs over-winter!
The hummingbirds I discovered myself without a sign by listening to the familiar clicks as they played in the same eucalyptus trees as the Monarchs. The Raptors must have been the large hawk-like birds that glided over the forest and the meadow. In the meadow, Anise grew everywhere. Alongside the trails, it grew taller than me! Ah, the smell of licorice mixed with eucalyptus.
I walked through the Anise until I came to a cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean, and looking down at a private beach. It was private because it was a refuge for the Snowy Plover birds. They were beautiful. I am afraid I disturbed them with my approach. This provided good pictures but “sorry guys, I didn’t mean to.” A flock of smaller birds flew back & forth over the water. The Snowy Plovers lined up to watched them, as did I.
The ocean is wonderful, the beaches full of life. What a treat to find a public park that provides refuge for so much wildlife! I came out of the mountains, leaving one gem full of wildlife, and happened upon this coastal gem. Wonderful!
I embrace this world, this ecosystem, just as I had that cooler one up in the mountains. From San Bernardino to Goleta, where will my travels lead me next? I look forward to learning more and sharing with you the wildlife stories I encounter.
P.S.: Delighted also to find this was a dog-friendly beach, what a treat!
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