Sunday, January 28, 2024

La Jolla Beach, Pelicans and Sea Lions

San Diego Metro KOA

Chula Vista, CA

January 24, 2024

(Just a reminder to click on the pictures for a much sharper image.) 

The La Jolla coastline is a photographers dream and it doesn't matter how many times we have walked there, it is always one jaw-dropper after another.  Incredible views, rocky reefs, hidden coves, sandy white beaches, and 300 feet tall cliffs are just a few reasons why this 7 mile stretch of coastline is a popular beach destinaiton.  The name La Jolla comes from the Spanish phrase "la joya" which means "the jewel" truly is !

I have been wanting to see Brown Pelicans since we arrived here.  On all of our outings I would say when we headed home, "No Brown Pelicans today."  They just happen to be one of my favorite birds and I love photographing them.  Wednesday morning we joined Carol and Ronnie for a walk at La fingers were crossed.   We usually park between the Children's Pool and The Cove.  The sidewalk follows the curve of the shoreline with gorgeous views of the ocean on one side and lots of green space and residences on the other side. Finding something to photograph is not a challenge.

I love this !


This artist is Paul Straham.  We stopped to admire his work and chat for awhile.  Some of his landscapes include the ocean and are done with beautiful vivid colors.   We chose a print he had painted of the pier with the cottages on it at Mission Bay  It is a wonderful reminder of a place we love to visit and the memories we have made. 

It turned out to be my lucky day.  I have never, ever seen so many Brown Pelicans.  

And this was just one small portion of one cliff...there were hundreds more pelicans!

The immature Brown Pelicans are gray-brown with pale whitish belly and breast.

Adult breeding Brown Pelicans on the Pacific coast have a red color on their neck.


The concrete breaker at the Children's Pool seems to be holding steady as we had read it had been damaged the first of the month.  We were happy to see snoozing seals.  This space is off limits to humans this time of year and reserved for the seal's birthing months. 

We were just discussing the whereabouts of the sea lions when we rounded a corner and stopped short in our tracks...

Sea Lions are known for their intelligence, playfulness, and noisy barking.  Their fur ranges in chocolate brown seen in males to a lighter, golden brown seen in females.  Males are much larger weighing in between 600-850 pounds and 7 feet in length while the females grow to 200-250 pounds and up to 6 feet in length.  

A noisy conversation...and we all know girls rule!

A mom and pup and my first time to see feeding time.

Seal Lions are a member of the otariid or "walking seal" family.  They have large flippers they use to walk on land.

These amazing creatures have a beautiful dog-like face and external ear flaps. 

Seal Lions often congregate in large groups when on the shore.  I read that they don't just cuddle for the heat.  Being very sociable marine mammals, they gain much more by chilling out on the rocks with friends than one might imagine... strengthening family relationships to finding a mate are important social skills for them. 

It was a most delightful morning topped off with lunch at Miguel's Mexican Restaurant on The Island with Carol and Ronnie.  The outdoor patio was perfect...

...and the queso was the best we have had.

I'll close with a few extra photos... 

Until next time, 


Friday, January 26, 2024

And The Rains Came...

San Diego Metro KOA

Chula Vista, CA

January 23, 2024 

To say it was a rainy weekend might be a bit of an understatement as it rained and rained on Saturday and Sunday and then Monday morning at 9:34, we received an emergency notice on our phones.  Neither of us have ever seen it rain so much and so hard in one day.  In fact, folks in San Diego had not ever seen it either.  The news reported that San Diego received more rain in those three days that it has in the past three months combined.  And Monday was reported to be the rainiest day ever in January dating back to 1850.  It was the fourth wettest day on record in the entire history of San Diego weather measurements according to the national Weather Service.  The photo below was taken about 8:00 am when we walked Sally.  Within a couple of hours, the concrete in the road and RV sites were under water.  

Sally was a real trooper...we managed several walks under the umbrella when the rains slowed a bit.

Joe and I filled our time reading, spelling, playing Yahtzee, making loaded baked potato soup and fixing stuff.

 But it was Sally who had the best idea of how to spend her time.  

The sun finally came out on Tuesday.  

We ventured over to Ocean Beach for a late lunch even though we knew the pier was closed from a few weeks ago. 

It was oyster day for me and South Beach Bar and Grill was calling. I enjoyed every morsel of a half dozen oysters on the half shell (the cocktail sauce at South Beach is the best ever) and a fried oyster taco with rice and beans.  We enjoyed a nice view of OB Pier (which just happens to be one of the most visited landmarks in San Diego) during lunch.   

Joe and I are always amazed at how busy San Diego highways are and yet always amazed at how easy it is to get around.  Interstate highways that are 4 and 5 lanes wide stacked up on top of one another sounds intimidating.  We try to pick our times to avoid locals going to or coming from work, but even then, it can be congested.  But in all the years visiting here, we have never had to slow to a crawl or come to a stand still.  I think that is pretty amazing.  And probably pretty lucky.  

Last week when we went with Carol and Ronnie to Switzer Canyon, we drove the long way home and stopped at The Landing on Coronado Island.  

I love driving over the Bay Bridge...

The Landing is so named because that's where the ferry lands when it takes folks to or from the city to the island.  

There is a wonderful green park with lots of little shops and restaurants to peruse or enjoy a meal at The Landing. But the really best part to me is the view of the city.

The pier just behind the palm trees is the pier where the ferry lands.

This is a good stopping spot so I will close for now...until next time,