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April 28, 2011

Abbotts Lagoon~Pt. Reyes National Seashore

With Bryce being on spring break this week, and some nice spring weather here, I thought it would be fun to take the kids on an impromptu beach adventure.   We ate lunch and left for Pt. Reyes National Seashore, which is about 25 minutes from home.

Our favorite beach was waiting for us, or so we thought.  Heart's Desire Beach is in Tomales Bay State Park, but it was CLOSED!  Must be due to California budget cuts or just happens to be closed on Tuesdays.

We continued on through the park to see what other adventure we could find.  There are SO many beaches that we haven't explored out in the park, we were bound to find something.

And we did......Abbotts Lagoon. 

Now, I'm a total Gilligan's Island fan, so when I read 'lagoon' I was in.

What a find! Just before reaching McClure's Dairy {which you can see in the photo above}, we pulled into the small parking lot to the trail head, no parking fee required, what a bonus!  We could see the lagoon and the ocean beyond from the parking lot and it looked to be about a mile and a half away.  But the kids were up for the hike.

"We're not stopping until we find the beach!"

Along the way we tried to find as many critters and creatures as we could.  Quite a few caterpillars.

Dragonflies that were very difficult to photograph...they didn't stop.

Tons of California Poppies and wild flowers.

We made good time, maybe about 20 minutes or so....not bad for a four and six year old.

Okay bird lovers, these guys were all over and I have NO idea what it you?

We came up on the cutest couple.........

 The lagoon.  Definitely worth the hike.  What a beautiful beach and scenery! 

At the lagoon, there are no worries of ocean waves which is such a bonus with kids.  They would have jumped completely in if I had let them. 

I failed to pack any extra clothes, food or water, but what's a little bit of wet clothing in the name of fun?

There's only one drawback that I can think of....the pit toilets are all the way back at the parking lot, but Bryce found just the right spot out in nature.

On our trek back, we found more flowers and critters to look at.  It was such a gorgeous day.

Bryce wanted to nap on the walking bridge in the sun on our journey back to the car.

Two pooped kids.

When we got home, I looked up Abbotts Lagoon to see how it was described online and here's what the national park website had to say:

A 2.5-kilometer (1.5-mile) walk through coastal scrub, across a bridge over a stream between two lagoons, and over sand dunes brings you to this ocean beach. The lagoons attract large numbers of migrating shorebirds in the fall, followed by the wintering ducks. Occasionally peregrine falcons are seen selecting their meals amongst these tasty morsels. The sand dunes backing the beach are home to the endangered snowy plover. The eggs and young of this ground-nesting bird are easily destroyed. Be especially careful in this area during their nesting season, June 1–September 15.

Here are some directions to Pt. Reyes National Seashore if you're interested.

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Marli said...

This looks wonderful! What a beautiful day y'all had! Looks so fun :) I love beaches.

Anonymous said...

Did you see Mary Ann and the movie star?

Sarah said...

Beautiful!! Point Reyes is about 2 hours away and I haven't been there since my 8th grade field trip! I think it is time for a trip back!

Sarah from The House That Ag Built

Nancy Grossi ~ Churned In Cali ~ The Wife of a Dairyman said...

@Snappy Di, no, only Mrs. Howle :)

@Sarah, if you make a trip, let me know!

TexWisGirl said...

well, i tried to i.d. that bird from my bird books and didn't see an exact match?! i'd guess a type of sparrow - looks a lot like our white-crowned sparrows except i don't see the white strips on the head! hopefully someone will be more familiar with Calif. birds and can help!

that looks like a wonderful place for you and the kids!

Sue said...

This was so refreshing, and had to be a most relaxing day for all.I saw it on the kids faces, and I know it must have shown on the photographers too. Beautiful photos, the bluest of waters Wow! ,thank you for sharing.
Enjoy your week.

Rae said...

Gorgeous. What a wonderful way to spend the day.

Nancy Grossi ~ Churned In Cali ~ The Wife of a Dairyman said...

@texwisgirl, well thanks for trying! I'll let you know if we get an id on it:)

Leontien said...

Ohhh great pics and it looked like you had a great time!


ann said...

The bird is a sparrow but there are several may be a house sparrow. Song has more white on him.
Love the memories you made that day. Great pictures

Katie said...

Can I come for a visit again? Stunning photos. I love the background you gave to the area.

Lady Esther Beau of Belmont (My fake Royal wedding guest name for the day)

Debbie said...

What a beautiful find! It looks like the kids had a ball for sure. I LOVE Poppies...which they lasted longer! Have a wonderful day...



Dana Gustafson said...

What a gorgeous day you had! ANd thanks to you, I am now humming the theme song to Gilligan's Island...LOVED that show!

bon bon said...

sounds like a wonderful outing!

glad you didn't encounter a 6' spider or a crate of radioactive vegetables. ;o)

kramme said...

Thanks for sharing these great location. I will check them out. My usual beach is Limantour Beach but need to expand my horizons.

Hearts Desire is closed for now on Mon and Tues.

ATTENTION Service Reductions in Effect 12/1/2010 - 6/30/2011: Heart's Desire, Shell Beach, and Millerton Point day use areas, including restrooms, will be closed on Mondays and Tuesdays of each week.

Melanie (Novato)

Nancy Grossi ~ Churned In Cali ~ The Wife of a Dairyman said...

Melanie, thanks for the info on Hearts Desire:) Abbott's Lagoon is definitely worth the hike, the kids had so much fun!