In lesson 1 of our science program (Apologia’s Zoology 2: Exploring Creation with Swimming Creatures of the Fifth Day) we learned what estuaries are and the brackish water that fills them. Basically, estuaries are where rivers meet oceans or seas. The water is brackish – a mix of fresh and salt water.
We read about Carmel River State Beach recently and I was excited to learn that it’s got an estuary where birds love to hang out. People do too. Not too many people though–apparently not many people use this beach. When people visit Carmel they go to the Carmel city beach. Who wants the crowds when you can have a beach practically all to yourself?
We did a very quick and brief review about estuaries and headed down after lunch. We didn’t have any troubles finding parking. We wore hiking clothes instead of swimsuits, and this was on purpose. This beach isn’t safe for swimmers due to the rough current. I have Keens that were great for trekking around Hawaii, getting in and out of watery and soft-sandy places. Here though, the sand is more like miniature rocks. The little rocks got in my Keens and wouldn’t escape. Ouch! Flip flops probably would have been better.
The first thing you come across is the marshy estuary, which right now is not reaching the ocean. Perhaps it’s the drought. Perhaps it has something to do with the dam removal that is ongoing. The birds love it though!
As we walked along the beach it became rockier and rockier. We walked and explored for about an hour–then my feet just couldn’t take it any longer. We rested by some big rocks and then took the walking path on top of the cliff back to the car.
I’m an East Coast girl, but I’m starting to love the Pacific Ocean! What is your favorite body of water? (The Gulf Coast in Florida has the best sand, imho)