News and events

Dine and Travel

While this blog has always been a hobby project, I have noticed that in local and national media there is a dearth of information about specifics of a visit to any given area of the California Coast. The big national / International publications hop scotch from San Francisco to Santa Barbara, skipping everything in between. The local guide books, websites and blogs are so granular that it is hard to get perspective. Further, many of the "local insiders" are actually from the East Coast or Midwest.

It has occurred to me that my family, friends and I dwell in a lot of different coastal places that aren't covered by the commercial travel guide media on the coast from San Diego to Seattle. I thought that I might start documenting some of these spots to fill in the blanks and create a slightly different perspective to those who might stumble upon this series of...

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Long Beach’s floating Christmas trees-a 69-year tradition

Christmas trees on Alamitos Bay

Tim Grobaty, Long Beach Post 11/22/2018

More than 60 of the 16-foot trees on 8-by-8-foot bases have sprouted up over the 69 years. Now you can spot them in the Colorado Lagoon, Heartwell, Scherer and El Dorado park lakes, Rainbow Lagoon and Harbor, and Spinnaker Bay, as well as in the initial spots of Alamitos Bay and Naples Canal—pretty much anywhere you’ll find water, you’ll find colorful trees growing in it when the Christmas season begins, which, in the case of the Trees on the Bay, is at dusk on Thanksgiving evening. The trees are lit every night through New Year’s Day.

Full Article

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Wind Farm on the California Coast? update

The first informational meeting took place in Morro Bay in 2015. After a pause caused by the U.S. Navy the initiative is inching forward. The timing is interesting considering PG&E has since announces the shutdown of the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant. While the potential output is likely not the same the wind farm can plug into the current power grid out of both Morro Bay and Diablo Canyon. It seems to have the capacity to power all households in San Luis Obispo County and then some. Also, new jobs may approximate jobs lost although it remains to be seen at what income level. Here is the local article from NBC affiliate KSBY kicking off the community feedback process.

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The allure of California’s central coast

By Lauren Williams, Staff Writer  Orange County Register November 27, 2016 Pristine coastal expanses and rolling hills characterize the Central Coast, and for me, this stretch of our state epitomizes everything that is wonderful about California living. Upon leaving Southern California, travelers pass through Ventura’s farmlands that butt up against the coast. In Santa Barbara, tall trees shade the 101. Should you continue on, the rolling hills of the Los Padres National Forest give way to more gentle slopes covered in vineyards. My blood pressure drops just thinking of these sights. On a recent weekend, in the dead of Southern California’s toasty Indian summer, my family woke early to make the six-hour journey to the Central Coast and Hearst Castle – dogs and all. We left while the sun was still low in the sky and decided to casually make our way to San Simeon, visiting favorite haunts and stopping for lunch along the way. More...
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Reflections on Cayucos

New Years Moon over Cayucos

California Central Coast is mostly pristine and unspoiled. The beach town known as Cayucos features 6 miles of sandy beach tucked into Estero Bay along the rugged central coast about half way between Los Angeles and San Francisco on Highway 1. It remains much as it was over the last 150 years without traffic lights or fast food. Originally populated by the Chumash, the town got its name in 1603, when Sebastian Vizcaino sailed his ships off the Central Coast and observed a number of small canoes just south of Point Estero. He christened the site “Cayucos,” or place of small canoes.

According to Dan Krieger, professor emeritus of history at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, during the mission period, the area from the southern end of Morro Bay to Point Estero was designated as the...

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Desalination advances in California

By Paul Rogers, [email protected], Bay Area News Group 1/30/2018 California water officials have approved $34.4 million in grants to eight desalination projects across the state, including one in Antioch, as part of an effort to boost the water supply in the wake of the state’s historic, five-year drought. The money comes from Proposition 1, a water bond passed by state voters in November 2014 during the depths of the drought, and it highlights a new trend in purifying salty water for human consumption: only one of the projects is dependent on the ocean. Instead, six of the winning proposals are for brackish desalination and one is for research at the University of Southern California. In brackish desalination, salty water from a river, bay or underground aquifer is filtered for drinking, rather than taking ocean water, which is often up to three times saltier and more expensive to purify. Complete article here  ...
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Wind Farm On California Coast?

Apparently as controversial as oil drilling and nuclear power, a proposal to explore a  project to harvest plentiful ocean wind has been halted for now by the navy. Those of us who live, play, work and visit the coast also use electricity. The messaging by leadership and opposition is confusing. We use increasing amounts of electricity yet the opposition seems to argue against every project (oil, nuclear, wind) including solar in the desert. Does it simply come down to profiteers who will always advocate for the source of their revenue against environmentalist who are energy users but say no to everything? It will be fascinating to go out another generation (twenty years) to see which direction West Coasters decide on. Plenty of drama is in store with this story! Read the New Times article about this restriction here: A summary of the Trident Morro Bay project as presented by Trident is here. A fair amount written in recent media has...
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California’s lost coast

By MICHAEL MCCARTHY, Vancouver Sun Published on: November 28, 2016 | Last Updated: November 28, 2016 10:45 AM PST California teems with over 38 million people and it seems every square inch of land is packed. Not so. The Lost Coast is virtually empty and there are good reasons for that. Just finding the Lost Coast can be a puzzle. If you look on your map, it’s the area of land jutting out into the Pacific near the northern end of the state, the most westerly piece of land in America. Until recently, the only way to approach the phenomenally beautiful coast was from the town of Eureka near Oregon, driving south to the hamlet of Petrolia and then trekking way out to the coast. Why is it “lost?” First off, there’s the fog. This section of extremely rugged coast is frequently lost in mist. Many ships have sunk here. There are no roads, towns or villages and...
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Desalination: Is the U S Navy a solution?

By Dr. Stephen Schwalbe Faculty Member, Public Administration at American Public University Since 2000, California has suffered some of its worst droughts since state climate record keeping began in the late 1800s. The 2001-2002 rainy season in Southern California was the driest on record. The drought of 2011-2014 was the worst in state history. As of May 2015, the drought has worsened and continued.

Current Water Conservation Efforts Are Not Sufficient

California implemented numerous water conservation efforts to counteract the lack of fresh water. Eventually, those efforts will not be enough if the drought continues. So what is Plan B in case of emergencies? There are three general solutions to water shortages: water conservation, water transfer from places with abundant water and desalination. California has already put water conservation practices into effect statewide. As for transferring water, this measure is already in place from Northern to Southern California. Water is also transferred from the Colorado River to Southern California, where the Colorado River provides...
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Coastal access still an issue

By Todd R. Hansen,  Daily Republic November 25, 2016 FAIRFIELD — Forty years after Californians demanded more access to the ocean, getting to the beaches is still a problem. “Despite the (California) Coastal Act’s guarantee of access for all Californians, the poll found significant barriers remain,” Jon Christensen, lead investigator for the UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability study, said in a statement released with the latest Field Poll. Sixty-two percent of voters polled indicated access to the coast and beaches is a problem. More...
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