I was in San Francisco for an Intel thingy, and figured, hey, I should do something fun.
So, out of the AAA magazine "Via", I found a story about this park called Ano Nuevo State Park
where there are a ridiculous number of elephant seals. These seals show up every year to mate. It is
in fact the largest mainland breeding colony for the northern elephant seal in the world!
The males battle each other for spots on the beach as well as for females. For more info, or to
reserve your guided tour, go to Ano Nuevo official site
And before you say, "Man, Paul, you're weird!", know that hundreds of thousands of people come to this park
every year to see seals too.

This is actually on route 1 along the coast. The road actually wound around a 300 foot sand cliff.

I thought this kid was a good signpost for child abuse. Nice tag buddy.

This is the first picture I took of a male elephant seal. They look like a big lump of flesh laying there.
They're kind of lifeless unless they're mating, fighting, or eating. Sort of sounds like a lot of
people I know... Not mentioning any names (Denis).

Here is an excellent specimen! Look at the size of the proboscis on this one!!

It's surprising to see these seals as you approach them. They kind of check you out, then
decide you're neither food, nor a female mate, and then they go back to doing nothing.

Here is one of the cuter seals. This one is a female, so it doesn't have that huge thing on its nose.

So, after swimming around pregnant for 6 months, the females return to Ano Nuevo to give birth. It's
wild actually, within 5 days typically, the females drop a 60 pound animal from their innards.
These are weaner pups who are now no longer being fed by Mom.
(Excerpt from web site) In late December, the females begin to arrive and form "harems" on the beaches of the Reserve.
Much smaller than the males, they average ten to twelve feet in length and weigh 1,200 to 2,000 pounds. T
Three to six days after she arrives, the female gives birth to the pup that was conceived the previous year.
Normally only one pup is born to each female, and she nurses for 25 to 28 days.

This guy kind of looked like a rhinoceros.

Here are some of those pups. After they're a month old, the mother tells them to get bent while she
gets her strength back and gets knocked up AGAIN by someone in the "harem". It kind of sounds like
life on a reservation, although my mom will probably kick my butt for saying that.

Here are some weaner pups. They actually look pretty cute at that age.

Here are some of the "harems" chilling out on the beach. Hey, check out that bikini!

More pups just hanging out.

Ano Nuevo State Park, CA.

And now it's time for VIDEOS!!

Sort of a weak video of seals moving around

Probably the least efficient way to move across sand

Male seal keeping "tight watch" on his harem

After I went through Ano Nuevo, I decided to just keep driving south for awhile.

This is in Santa Cruz, CA, just north of town, at the Natural Bridges State Beach.
Apparently a lot of butterflies migrate through here but there were none there when I was around.
Check it out at Natural Bridges State Beach

Natural Bridges State Beach, CA.

Ever since I travelled Europe with Jason Leuschen, I feel compelled to take pictures of
pigeons. This is north of Monterey, looking out into Monterey Bay, CA.

Monterey, CA.

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