Cabrillo National Monument: Part Deux, San Diego

Cabrillo Tide Pools @ San Diego, California

My wife and I came to Cabrillo briefly while in town for a wedding a couple years ago but didn’t get to stay long since we had to dash to wedding-related events across town. This time around, we brought the girls with us (and a better camera) with a little more time for exploration.

Cabrillo Tide Pools @ San Diego, California

The weather in San Diego this week is cloudy and possibly rainy, so the sky was overcast for the most part. We followed the path down towards the water. The girls were enamored with the ocean despite still being several hundred yards from it.

When we got down closer to the water, it required some fancy footwork to navigate the kids over the rocks. Everything is at your own risk and a slip from up here was unlikely to result in a successful rescue effort.

Cabrillo Tide Pools @ San Diego, California

At the bottom of the cliff they were rewarded with a large pile of stinking, rotting kelp. But they had fun picking up rocks and throwing them in the ocean. Throwing rocks at anything is always satisfying.

Cabrillo Tide Pools @ San Diego, California

It’s always interesting to see the effects of water erosion on rock. The formations left behind are always so unique. Since California is largely arid, it yields land formations and rocks not seen anywhere we’re used to having around us.

Cabrillo Tide Pools @ San Diego, California

Someone visiting before us took it upon themselves to build a totem in the water. Over the course of a single hour, we saw the tide go from barely licking the bottom of it to rushing past the bottom three rocks. It made for a good indicator of the tide’s progress, as it changes quickly as time¬†wears on.

Cabrillo Tide Pools @ San Diego, California

Time has no effect on my wife though. The power of human sacrifice defies the ravages of the temporal plane.

Cabrillo Tide Pools @ San Diego, California

As the tide turned more violent we got the kids out of the danger zone and went up to the top of the monument to get them some snacks from the observatory.

Cabrillo National Monument @ San Diego, California

This time we popped into the little museum they have up there that details the history of the monument, but focusing on such things with tired children in tow is seldom informativ. So we headed off to see the statue, which we completely missed last time.

Juan Cabrillo @ Cabrillo National Monument, San Diego, California

Off in the distance there looks to be a lighthouse on a hill, we couldn’t figure out how to get to it but I believe it is Point Loma. The park was going to be closing soon so we didn’t have time to go exploring for it.

Lighthouse @ Point Loma, San Diego, California

Then at last, we got to the base of the statue. Juan Cabrillo, the Portuguese founder of the area, is rendered in the same futurist aesthetic that seems quite common in the statues and architecture I’ve seen around the west coast (the statues on the Hoover Dam had a similar futurist/art deco flair).

Juan Cabrillo @ Cabrillo National Monument, San Diego, California

A crow landed on the tip of the cross, looking the same direction as Cabrillo himself and holding that pose for a while. The girls were endlessly amused by the bird sitting on the guy’s statue.

Juan Cabrillo @ Cabrillo National Monument, San Diego, California

It was getting chilly and windy, and the park was closing, so we packed up for the day and headed out.

This was the second time we had been to Cabrillo and it was just as impressive as the first time. We really should have come earlier in the day, as it was also the second time we came as the tides were coming in and we didn’t actually get to do anything in the tidal pools.

There’s always next time! It’s worth visiting Cabrillo for the views alone, and it’s always satisfying knowing that we’re supporting the National Park Service by visiting.

Johnny

Pro-family and anti-drug, when he's not too busy living with four beautiful ladies, he likes long walks on the beach and poking dead things with sticks.

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