Gone, Gone, Gone!
Sunday March 12
By: Robert Tongen
I drove through light rain halfway to Kiddie Beach this morning to meet Peter O'Sullivan for a paddle this morning. The streets were wet, but the sky looked lighter. The tide was out, the sea calm, and only a slight breeze. When the bathrooms were finally unlocked, we were greeted by several seals swimming by barking at us as if telling us to get off their beach.

The beach looked different because the Manson Dredge, Crane and pipes were gone. The fence was still up around Hobie Beach and a Payloader and the trailer office were all that remained. Peter said they had moved to Ventura Harbor. The parking lot was a lot less crowded too. Gone!

We paddled out through the pond and made a slow, large, counter clockwise circle around the breakwater looking to spot gray whales migrating north with their calves. What a perfect day to watch for whales! The ocean had a glass like slightly undulating surface with dark sky in the background. Spouts could be seen from a long distance. But there were no spouts! We watched the Ranger 85, Vanguard, and another whale watching boat leave the harbor but they all headed toward the islands and never slowed. Gone!

The Island Packer's website reports spotting 36 Gray whales, 1 Minke, 8 Humpbacks, and 58 dolphins since the first of March. That includes ships out of Ventura and Channel Islands Harbor's sometimes two trip a day. In past years it was not unusual to be in the middle of a pod of ~100 feeding!

We then paddled in to the harbor and checked out the work going on on the island where a new hotel will be built. They are riprapping the shore with a new layer of rocks being placed over a heavy woven fabric.

I believe this is the first anniversary of Joe Barrett's last paddle. Gone but not forgotten!

That is the way it was after the Worm Full Moon, on Oscar Sunday 2023.
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