The Elephant Seals of California

incidental naturalist

I was traveling north on Highway One; a highway carved between crumbling rocks, towering Redwoods and the rich blue waters of the Pacific Ocean. Highway One is also carved into literature by some of the greatest American writers. Kerouac, Miller and Steinbeck have all found inspiration on this iconic route. I was also here to be inspired, but my inspiration would come from a different place than that of the great novelists.

I set off from Redondo Beach in the morning, passing through Santa Barbara on the way to San Simeone, where I would spend the night. I arrived shortly after dark with a sense of excitement. At last I was within striking distance of California’s Northern Elephant seals.  It was the Thanksgiving holiday; Not the best time for seal viewing, but a time of year when young animals start to haul up on the beaches. In the past…

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