Monday, November 4, 2013

Seeking Geology Along the Most Beautiful Shoreline in the World: the Central California Coast

Oh, I know that the title of this post is a bit of hyperbole...there are many beautiful coastlines in the world, and you are free to argue for your favorite in the comments. But I think that geology has dealt a special hand to the part of California between San Simeon and Bodega Bay on the California Coast. It's hard to think of a more diverse place of intriguing scenery, with fascinating geological relationships at the same time.
I had two occasions in recent months to explore this most beautiful region; a three day trip with my students, and a spur-of-the-moment camping trip. We didn't visit every beach along the Central Coast, but we found several spectacular state parks, and I was reminded at every turn of the road what an incredible place live in. California is a wonderful place...
Here's a bit of a preview...we'll have a look at Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park and wonderful McWay Fall, which at times falls directly into the sea.
We'll explore little-known Garrapata State Park, a stretch of beach that is pleasingly deserted much of the time.
Point Lobos State Preserve is better-known, but it also has a wonderful geological story: just where did those incredible conglomerates come from?
 Point Lobos also has some intriguing sea arches.
And Bodega Head...what is the Hole in the Head, and what stupid thing was nearly done here in the 1950s? I hope you will enjoy the journey!