Thursday, January 6, 2011

Santa Barbara Island

Santa Barbara Island is one of the five islands that make up Channel Islands National Park. It is the smallest island only being one-square mile in size and is located about 55-miles from Ventura County.

I spent 3 days on the island in September, and thoroughly enjoyed it. I think it is the best way to really enjoy the island and experience it.

Here are three photos I would like to share. You can go to my website to see more photos. And for more information and transportation to the island, you can go here.

After I arrived to the island, unpacked, got settled, I decided to hike part of the island and see what I see. I headed for Seal Rookery as that sounded interesting and an easier hike. After climbing an incline with all my weekend gear, making two trips, I wanted something non-strenuous. :) There were a ton of Sea Lions, possibly Harbor Seals, and possible Elephant Seals. I thought, this probably will be good for sunrise.

The next morning I was a tad late for sunrise, but it looked like all the Sea Lions and Seals were just waking up and starting to move. I watched them for almost an hour and found it quite interesting. They would get up, and the ones that were furthest away from where they entered the water, they would make their way up this trail that they made over time. If others were lying in their way, they would just crawl right on over them. Adults would stop every now and then for the youngsters and vice versa.

So, I decided the next morning, I would make sure I am there at sunrise. It was a nice hike to start your morning out, but still quite dark with Owls flying around. I was there at sunrise, the sun was already starting to make its way above the peaks of Catalina Island. The Sea Lions and Seals were still sound asleep. Just a few were up and about, but not many. Hmmm, I thought as I waited. Well, it wasn't until about 20 minutes after sunrise that they started waking up and making their way down the trail to the area where they entered the water. I thought, well this will work still, although a tad hard to shoot almost directly into the light and not much of an area to work with in moving around to a better location. So, I did what I could. It wasn't until about 45 minutes after the sun was up that the majority of them started waking and making their way to where they entered the water. It almost seem like clock work and on a schedule. But, I stayed for another hour or so and watched, photographed and learn some things about them before heading back to my place for breakfast.