This post is a lot of firsts for Ole Goes.
To start, this is my first post via my iPhone, and so far, I’m impressed and very excited to be able to post on the go.
This is also my first urban hike. Having lived in Southern California for the last two decades, I’ve learned that although, not my ideal way to hike, any bit of nature I can find in the midst of urban sprawl, I will take it.
And lastly, this is the first unplanned post of Ole Goes, but that is the beauty of travel. It’s the surprises you can stumble upon along the way. Because it was unplanned though, I went back the next day to explore it more thoroughly, so this will also be my first two-part post.
Strand Vista Park
I was staying with friends in Laguna Niguel and while they were working I had spent a rather lazy day watching Anthony Bourdain’s show Parts Unknown, which is a little less focused on food (not that I mind that topic), and a little more focused on travel and culture.
However, it was Earth Day and I was feeling a little guilty about spending all of it inside, so when my friend suggested a walk on the beach at sunset, I jumped at the chance. Little did we know how Mother Nature was going to reward us.
She took me to a park they had been to before, called Strand Vista Park, which is where you would actually park for the whole adventure I went on the next day, and is the best spot to find on Google Maps.
Strand Vista Park is on a bluff looking out over the Pacific as well as onto some pretty amazing multi-million dollar properties. There’s no fee to park and on the north end is a wide walkway with stairs leading down to the beach. There is also a funicular to get down as well, for something a little different, or for those who have difficulty with stairs. And restrooms. All along the way, there were restrooms and water fountains, even showers for those that enjoy the beach or water.
We had a toddler with us so we took our time with the stairs and enjoyed the sunset. As we neared the bottom, my friend warned me that if the tide is up, there is not much beach and being her little one LOVES the water, maybe we just not even go near, which was fine with me.
However, that’s when we discovered the Strand Beach Revetment Trail, which she hadn’t seen on her last visit. This is a concrete boardwalk about 10 feet above the beach right below the impressive homes. Stretching the length of the beach toward the headlands, we got pretty excited about this new find, especially to visit at sunset. It has restrooms near either ended and is dotted with little alcoves with a bench.
The sun was getting low and it was getting chilly, so we decided to head back up to the bluff and walk along that. The concrete is inlaid with glass and shell and stone and depicts the beach and depth of the ocean as well as some marine life mosaics.
And this is where we got our reward. As we enjoyed the last few minutes of the sunset, a small pod of gray whales was passing by on their northward migration, one of which was a calf, happily breaching all along the way. EARTH DAY SUCCESS!! 😃❤️🌎🐋
(to be cont’d…)
THANK YOU FOR VISITING AND SEE YOU ON MY NEXT ADVENTURE!