Archive for February, 2014

San Bruno again

Thursday, February 20th, 2014

A couple of weeks ago I paddled over to Isla Coronado with John and Ruth and we spent some time exploring the trail system and chatting with tourists.  This was my first time launching from Punto el Bajo, north of La Picazón,  and it gave me the idea that I might return and do some exploring on my own.  Day before yesterday I went back and paddled north up the coast to San Bruno.

We had driven there by car a year before, January 10, 2013, to explore northward toward San Juanico; but though the others had returned since, I had never seen any of the coast in between.The beach south of the arroyo at San Bruno

I chose a good day, as the water was glassy for nearly eight hours. I set off at 9:30 and landed for lunch at about noon, at the south end of the bay, away from the fish camp where we parked last time. A panga had arrived at about the same time I did, and I saw no reason to intrude. It’s a longer beach than I remembered, with fancifully-eroded rocks at the near end to provide an interesting landing and then furniture.

There were plenty of other sea creatures about. On my way north I saw several sets of little fins circling in the water, and on the return some of them showed themselves to be large rays, jumping into the air and landing with a loud smack (they’re perfectly capable of entering the water smoothly, so they must have been up to something else). There were sea lions, both in the water near me and hauled out on the rocks, and near the end of my return there were dolphins, moving northwest from Isla Coronado. They were hunting, not showing off, so though I can now truthfully say that I have some dolphin pictures, I can also truthfully say that they are not noteworthy.

The landscape, though, I think is impressive. Islands tend to provide the focus for us here, and our peninsular beaches are often just places to launch from, but I saw a lot of very pretty territory and landed in a couple of nice spots. From the sea it is apparent that some kind of strata are tilted up, from north to south, and then eroded by the water washing off the mountains from west to east; and then some other pattern creates perfect slots or arrays of hoodoos, and right down to the waterline where you can get at them.
Costal geology
Along the rocks and the beaches there were birds by the thousand, mostly pelicans and seemingly motionless. Would nesting be so quiet? Maybe they were waiting for the rays or the mammals to leave, or just celebrating some avian holiday (there were plenty of them fishing in the morning, but almost none in the afternoon). In some pictures that I took the shores are lined with shining white heads.

It was about as much paddling as I want to do in a day, about fifteen statute miles without counting any of the detours, but I think that I can now claim, in addition to a couple of islands and some other bits, all of the coastline from Juncalito northward nearly to Punta Mercenarios.Near Punta el Bajo
This is an overview of our trip. The beach at San Bruno is just around the last little dark headland, this side of the more distant point.