Before heading back to San Juan Island, we spent a few more days in San Diego. We took a short scenic flight over the city, and my favorite part was flying up the coastline at about 1000 feet. I even saw a few gray whales and bottlenose dolphins from the air!
|La Valencia hotel, also known as the Pink Lady of La Jolla|
|La Jolla Cove|
|Scripps Institute of Oceanography|
The next day, we had a chance to visit La Jolla cove on the ground. It was insanely crowded as locals and visitors enjoyed the unseasonably warm early spring weather, and it never ceases to amaze me how the marine wildlife is living in such close proximity to so many people. Too close, really, I thought in this case.
People were showing little to no regard for the posted regulations about keeping your distance from sea lions.
It was really disheartening to see people not caring at all about the healthy sea lions, let alone the sick and dead ones. Here's someone taking a selfie with a pup; you can see one of them is really emaciated.
It's been a tough year for sea lion pup survival, and I'm sure the added stress of people isn't helping. But for some reason, the sea lions keep hanging out there.
We were commenting how amazing it was no one had been bitten, but apparently just a few hours before we were there a five year old kid got bitten in the face by a sea lion so....there you go.
In addition to the California sea lions, there were some harbor seals on the beaches as well. I was surprised to see so many pups; up here in Washington the pups aren't born until July, but I guess in California pups are born between February and April. This one was nursing despite having people all around it:
There were also lots of pelicans and cormorants around, plus one wandering tattler (137) to top off my year list additions for the California/Mexico trip.
Then, on Monday the 23rd, it was time to make the last leg of journey back north, where we welcomed by rain in Seattle.
|Flying over the Space Needle on our descent into Seattle|