March 3, 2009

After breakfast in Watsonville, we headed south to Monterey. It was raining, with hard showers at times, so we stopped to buy Rod a rainproof windbreaker and a hat.

Near Seaside we could get to the beach and take this shot looking northward. The shore fog that is formed by the rough surf is intriguing to me.

Waves are waves, you might say, but these breakers coming in to the beach just north of Monterey definitely had a different feel to them than the waves on Florida beaches, say near Destin. Maybe the nature of the bottom allowed them to come in as smooth fronts, and they seemed to have sharper crests, and when they broke there was this intriguing fog that played around the crests from the cold water. That fog was even more dramatic at Pebble Beach. The waves were fascinating to watch.

We visited the public library there and gleaned information about the area and used the GPS to get us to the marina. It had rained most of the morning, but we got in some exploration around the marina and the fish market. The fish market is behind the boats seen below and we walked to it along the high pier.

There were several of these birds, which reminded us of the grebes we saw in Switzerland.

We put on our raingear and walked around to the fish market, mainly because the high pier offered good views of the marina. There we found hopeful gulls and pelicans as well as a lounging group of sealions.

The presence of the pelican in a fishing area didn't surprise us after our experience in Florida, but there he would have been accompanied by a heron or two. This wet pelican on the deck was not nearly as elegant as those we had seen on the wing yesterday.

We went over to Fisherman's Wharf and explored it. The double row of shops and restaurants is on the wharf and they overhang the water. There were some nice restaurants and of course an abundance of souvenier shops. There were also whale-watching, fishing and sightseeing tours to be booked there.

My favorite part of Fisherman's Wharf was the views it gave of the bay and marina. This is a view toward Cannery Row. It was nice to see a little bit of blue since we had been in pouring rain most of the day.

I also liked seeing the various kinds of boats at their mooring points in the bay. The distant shoreline past the boats is where we stopped this morning to take the pictures of the waves.

We walked down the street along Fisherman's Wharf as shown below, but besides the views, we didn't find much to interest us. On a better day we might have taken a tour.

The street down Fisherman's Wharf.

Tucked away in the row of shops behind Brenda is a pastry shop, and it's hard to sneak a pastry shop past Rod. We stopped and had a nice cup of coffee and a snack.

We then enjoyed exploring the back boardwalks that overhung the surf. We saw some damage to concrete piers that appeared to be earthquake damage.

We headed on down to Cannery Row which is just along the coast from Fisherman's Wharf. We saw lots of names we have read about and seen in movies. Cannery Row was an interesting place to visit, with lots of history, lots of little shops and museums spread over several blocks along the bay.

At places the buildings overhung the bay. There was a good bit of evidence of earthquake damage with cracked foundations and older concrete structures with obvious damage.

I took a picture of the map at right because it showed where we were and covered just about the whole area that we visited near San Francisco on this trip. We had already been up the coast to Pigeon Point Lighthouse, and were about to go down to Pebble Beach and Cypress Point. We were to cover the entire coast road up to San Francisco and across the Golden Gate Bridge and out to Drakes Bay.

To Pebble Beach

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