Sunday, February 6, 2011

An Adventure at Ano Nuevo

Ano Nuevo State Park

Last week, Matteo, Nico and I took advantage of the gorgeous weather here in California to go visit the elephant seals at Ano Nuevo State Park. From December to March, the Northern elephant seals come to the park for breeding season. It's really an amazing experience to be able to see the seals in their habitat.

We were able to witness a few bull seals fighting for dominance and access to breed with the female seals.
Bull Seals

We did see some seals mating. I have to say that I was a bit relieved that the boys were not at all curious for an explanation of what was happening (at least this year).
Seals Mating

By late December, many of the females have given birth to the pups that had been conceived the previous year. It was very sweet to see them nursing their young.

At some points during the almost 4 mile guided hike, I think the boys were just happy to sit and play in the sand
Boys play

On the way back to the nature center, there was an outpost where we could learn more about the elephant seals
Naturalist at Ano Nuevo

and their population
Seal Census

It was an incredibly fun and educational trip for all of us. Now that the boys are older, they seem to get so much out of learning about the world through being able to see and experience it. I really do feel so fortunate to be in a place where these experiences are readily available.
My Boys

Wishing you all many glorious adventures!


Stephanie said...

What an amazing experience! I would love to see that!

Bending Birches said...

wow- how amazing...I remember visiting seal beach in la jolla and never wanting to leave....what an experience for you!

Nicola (Which Name?) said...

Oh, I love Ano. What a special adventure you all had!
(I used to work at Butano State Park, which is just north and east. They are sister parks. You guys would love it. Follow it with artichoke soup and sourdough at Derwart's in Pescadero!)
Warmly, Nicola

renee ~ heirloom seasons said...

You do have such beautiful places to explore. I miss the northern CA coast too too much!
I was so happy to see a note from you this morning, you have been in my thoughts, hope all has been very well!
Love to you! Renee

Jessica said...

I cannot imagine witnessing something so amazing--how fortunate you all were to have seen it!

P.S., I LOVE your valentine header--so adorable!

Lisa said...

Could the weather have been any more beautiful??? What a fun day! I love living here!!

Andrea said...

How amazing!! What a special date for your two big boys. They won't soon forget it!

earthboysblog said...

We recently travelled many state parks in N. California, we had a beautiful time there. Last night I was watching the video of my children running on those beautiful beaches being chased by those gigantic waves. Lovely photos you have shared, what an adventure for the children. If I had known you were there we could have visited!

Tahara said...

I still can't get over the fact that there is sand visible in your pictures!...There is so much snow on the ground here I forgot what sand looks like :-)

What a wonderful time you guys had!