Wild Recovery
San Jose, California
January 16, 2010
Whale Watching Day Trip III
Carmel River State Beach Hike

Monterey Bay
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January 16, 2010
Carmel River State Beach Hike
Monterey County
Note Special 9:30 AM Start Time!

The Place

Waves Breaking On Sandy Beach

On Carmel Bay, the mile long beach features a bird sanctuary in a lagoon (just before the Carmel River empties into the sea) featuring a wide variety of waterfowl and songbirds.This is the Carmel River Lagoon and Wetlands Natural Reserve where even the most casual bird watcher may observe ducks, mallards, coots, egrets, herons and hawks to name a few. Bring your binoculars! This trip explores the river mouth, then travels the length of Carmel River State Beach to a point just north of Point Lobos named Monastery Beach, for the Carmelito Monastery located just across Highway 1 from the shore. Monastery Beach, also known as San Jose Creek Beach, is part of the park and is popular with scuba divers.

Rocky Beach

The hike
Level 1 - Miles about 2 - Elevation 25 ft. - Host Mary G. and Tom L.

We will follow the shoreline down coast and over the sandy berm. In places the route is rocky, the domain of nervous crabs who scatter at your approach. You will notice the ice plant lined path above the beach - we will save this for our return trip. After rounding a minor point and passing some wind bent Monterey cypress we will arrive at Monastery Beach.
We will take the beach service road and trail leading us to our meeting spot by a rock outcropping. The trail then takes us up a small hill before reaching the lagoon. On the hill is a cross implanted by the Carmel Mission to commemorate the origional cross put there as a signal by the 1769 Portola expedidition to the Spanish ship that was to resupply them. We will then follow the path down slope intersecting with another path that leads along the south bank of the Carmel River. We will then follow the berm and beach back to the trailhead.

At the parking lot we will gather and those continuing on to participate in whale watching will caravan over to Monterey Wharf.



From San Jose Take 101 south to Salinas, take hwy 68 to Monterey Peninsula, then hwy 1 south toward Monterey/Carmel. Once in Carmel you will go right on Rio Road, Left on Santa Lucia (just past the Carmel Mission) Left on Carmelo and you will see the parking lot at the end of Carmelo.
Drive Time is about 1 hour 45 mins.

NOTE: Parking is Limited, Car Pooling Advised!
Fees:Free Parking at Carmel River Beach
Dogs Strictly Allowed ONLY on Leash


Directions to the Wharf:

Head back out on Carmelo, Right on Santa Lucia, Left on Rio Rd, Continue onto Junipero Ave, Right on Ocean Ave, Left on Carpenter St, Left onto hwy 1, Take exit 39B toward Monterey, merge onto Munras Ave, Left on Soledad Dr, Right on Pacific, Right on Scott St, Left on Olivier St, take first right to stay on Olivier, you will see parking lots, wharfs and your destination. (There are lots of signs to follow from hwy 1 to the wharf).
Drive time is about 20 mins.

1:00 PM At The Wharf
Whale Watching Day Trip III
Monterey Bay Boat Ready to Leave Dock

The Place

The Monterey Bay Submarine Canyon is close to the shore, allowing deep water species of whales, dolphins, and seabirds to occur near the coast. These waters are an extremely productive feeding area for many whales and dolphins. Shallow water species, such as the Gray Whale, migrate close to shore in the narrow shelf. This unique Canyon makes Monterey Bay one of the best places in the world to see these magnificent  creatures. The Gray Whales start their journey from the north as far as the Bering Sea in early December and travel along our coastline on their way  to the winter breeding grounds in Baja California. Killer Whales can be spotted in the Monterey Bay year round. These highly intelligent top predators periodically cruise along the canyons edge.

Dolphin school

Getting There

From San Jose and San Francisco [from north]: Take Hwy 101 south, take Hwy 156 West [sign: Monterey Peninsula], take Hwy 1 South exit [sign: Pacific Grove]. This veers right into Del Monte Ave.; Fisherman's Wharf is 1.5 miles on right. The most convenient parking is right at the Wharf but can cost between $12.00 and $15.00. Try to carpool. Once at the wharf continue toward the south end or old Fisherman's Wharf. We will meet at the end of the Old Wharf in front of Sam's Fishing Fleet and check in at 1:00 PM.  Travel time from San Jose is about 90 minutes. Please be on time for this boat needs to be on schedule.

Dolphin School

Weathering The Storm

Our trip starts out leaving the wharf on  a 70 foot touring vessel. The trip will take place rain or shine so come prepared for the worst. The Monterey Bay is typically calm in January, however storms can often cause for very  rough seas. If the winds are too high the trip will postpone. An early morning phone call to our host Tom L., between 7:00am and 8:00am will confirm the trip is on or postponed. His number is 408-375-1383. The trip will last 3 to 4 hours, depending on the sightings.

Three Dolphins Jumping

How to get on board

In order for us to be able to make trips like this we need to ask everyone interested to pay in advance, and from the reaction we are getting from our members this trip will sell out early. It's real simple to get on board, just contact:
Mary G. { (831) 431-3491 }
Martin O. { (408) 230-1321 }
Tom L. { (408) 375-1383 }

and pay them the $30.00 boat fee. It is our policy not to turn away newcomers, so if you are a newcomer and can't afford this trip please let us know. There are still a few tickets available as of 12/19/09, and we will continue to accept reservations until the 70 person limit is reached. There will be no refunds unless the trip cancels due to bad weather.

Know Before You Go

Some of the hazards on this trip will be getting wet and cold, so this can be avoided by bringing along waterproof boots, rain pants, rain jacket with a wool or synthetic fiber sweater that will stay warm if it gets wet, and waterproof gloves.  A waterproof camera is suggested. Try eating a light breakfast of solid food with not much liquid. Bring some snacks and bottled water along.  There  is no food or beverages for sale on the boat. If you think you are going to get sick while on the boat, please don't use the rest room. Go to the back of the boat and do it. You won't be alone, and most will like to get it over with so they can enjoy the rest of the trip. The restrooms are for other things.

Wild Recovery Meetings | What to Wear & Bring | Trail Maps/ Park Info | Contact Us
What is Wild Recovery? | NA Online Resources | Business & Documents