Friday, September 3, 2010

San Simeon Day 3

The third day of the road trip was also set aside for exploring.  Some of you have probably been to San Simeon to visit "Hearst Castle."  Hearst Castle is the primary tourist attraction on the central California coast, but this trip was about relaxing and messing around, not about going to tourist attractions.  After breakfast we left Morro Bay and drove about 40 miles north to the Piedras Blancas light house area.  (Don't get me wrong, Hearst Castle is an amazing place, but not this trip.)

California has 840 miles of coastline. Most of it is beautiful. This spot is no exception. If you enlarge this photo you will see a young male Elephant Seal (towards the lower right hand corner).  He's just this minute coming ashore after a 3,000 mile migration from the Aleutian Islands to this very spot.

If you noticed that the water is sort of rusty red around this guy, it's because he has just totally cleaned out his bowels and bladder before going ashore. They don't like rolling around in their own muck on shore, so they go "shi shi" and "unko" in the water.  Oh sorry, that's pee pee and poo poo in Japanese slang.

Nothing but nature at it's finest going on in this shot.

A few hundred yards south of the pic of the young male Elephant Seal, is a bunch of other seals (mostly females) who  have recently arrived. They come and go at all times and don't travel in groups during their long journey.  We're looking at only about 10% of the beach. During January and February the entire beach is covered with seals. Earlier I said they wouldn't muck up their rookery, you can see here how clean it is.

We decided to take advantage of the beach and catch a few rays. That's me in the middle looking around for the concession stand.   I passed, as all they had was herring on a stick...



  1. They look so relaxed! I guess the male seal doesn't have to worry about putting the seat down or flushing does he? Thanks for the new dirty words! - G

  2. Thank you Patrick for taking us with you on your trip along the Californian coast.

  3. That's funny! You gonna make that your new profile picture?

  4. Hey, everything's better on a stick. You should've tried one.

  5. Great shots of the seals :-)

  6. Wow!!! Great photos again!! Love the seals!

    Hey - "shi shi" is also "pee pee" in Portuguese!!! (koko is poopoo...though I'm not sure I spelled that right!)

  7. Looking good, but next time could you put on a Speed-o for the picture?

    I love these elephant seals!

    If you pass by the Madonna Inn on the way home could you take a few shots of it? I'd use them in a post and link the credit back to you, thereby making you famous.

  8. I can see that the one male dude had released copious amounts of shi shi and unko.

  9. Great post and biology lesson. I'm an animal person, but did not know this about these critters toileting before landing. Really nice pic of the elephant guy!

  10. Gorgeous scenery and great pics of the seals! And too funny about the rusty water! lol

  11. Were going here this winter. I can't wait to see the sites.


  12. I love this stretch of highway, and these are great pictures. But Hearst castle is about the most overrated tourist trap I have ever fallen into.

  13. Georgina - LOL, no he doesn't he might have a harem of 50 or so females to put the lid down for him.

    Costas - Thanks Costas! My pleasure.

    Brian - Probably not! but there will be a new one today.

    Alex - If it was deep fried, I might have...

    Nat - Thanks Nat!

    Marlene - The cookie shop I refered to in yesterday's post was in Cayucos, which is a little Portuguese fishing town...

    BB - NO way! Looking for some Madonna photos. I got some somewhere...

    Joe - muy macho...

    tapirgal - thanks! They don't look quite so cute as the age..

    Marguerite - Thanks! You know, I get hungry at the sight of your name...

    Clarissa - During the winter you may see more seals than you can believe...

    Cheeseboy - Me too! I used to think that about Hearst Castle also, until I took the "behind the scenes" tours...

  14. shi shi and unko.....I am introducing those into my vernacular.

  15. Posting about animals makes us do some research which is a good thing. We learn new things and get to share with our readers. Hubs and I got investigated by 2 grey seals in Maine while we put-putted along in our tiny boat on Penobscot Bay last week. They couldn't believe their eyes: such a small boat, with such an alarmingly loud engine! It wasn't Steadfast, but we were on the ocean.


  16. These pictures are stunning...(I ignored the poo poo, hahaha) I hope to explore the California coast some day!!

  17. I feel relaxed and on vacation just looking at those pictures. Thanks for the few minutes of solace.

  18. faye - Me too! They are cute...

    Erika - You're turning Japanese, I really think so...

    Rosemary - That's so true! We talked to one of the volunteers there and it was amazing.

    Joan - It's a beautiful place Joan!

    Chuck - Happy to be of service!

  19. Thanks so much for this pictorial tour to California coast, Pat!
    The bottom picture is so cute!

    Thanks for the beauty you share with us.

  20. thee photo's were great.. makes me want to travel so badly, and explore the world and write about the things i'll see.. cool.

  21. Betty - Happy to be of service!

    eemah - Thanks so much! That's a great goal! I hope you get to do it. Also, thanks for commenting and signing up for my blog!

    Darryl and Ruth - Thanks! Nature made it easy this trip...

  22. Beautiful shots of the beaches and coast line. I always like to see the seals.


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