California Super Bloom at San Onofre

Trestles Beach April 2019 California Super Bloom

Over three weeks ago, I had the supreme pleasure of taking the opportunity to get out and see what was happening on the coast of North County San Diego. Amidst all of the rain that we got this winter season, I was extremely excited to see how all of the plants on the coast looked. Did the California super bloom affect the coast?

So I grabbed my backpack and filled it with plant ID books, my iPad, water, sunscreen and ran out the door.  Well maybe not running, but I was super excited!

My two daughters and I headed first to Trestles Beach Trail and afterward, doubled back and explored Bluffs Beach at San Onofre State Beach.  I have to say, what I saw, took my breath away.

San Onofre State Beach Google Map
Trestles Beach Trail to the north- San Onofre Bluff Campground south

Ok, are you ready to check out all of the plants at San Onofre State Beach in North County San Diego!

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Best San Diego Hikes on the Coast

Encinitas Bluff Tree Best San Diego Hikes

San Diego County has some of the best coastlines on the entire coast of California. From the rugged coast, with towering sandstone cliffs found in North County San Diego, all the way down to the open estuaries, and sandy beaches located in South County San Diego. Today I would like to list for you some of my favorite San Diego hikes that you too can experience, on the coast of San Diego.

All San Diego hikes listed are to be taken only with a negative low tide. Please make sure to check out the tide chart before embarking on your adventure, as some of these walks are dangerous if the tide comes up on you. A good rule of thumb would be to allow a couple of hours before the high tide comes back in. Remember, a very high tide always follows a really low tide.

One more thing. I have written extensively on all of these sites previously, and have linked each post appropriately, so click on the underlined links for more information.

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Five Best San Diego Beaches You Must Visit!

South Ponto Best San Diego Beaches

Do you love the beach as much as me? Have you ever been to San Diego? With over 70 miles of coastline, San Diego has some of the most ravishing beaches in the world!

Well, today I would like to give you my short list of the five best San Diego beaches that you have to visit if you are ever down here!

I have written extensively about each area prior, so for more information click on the appropriate link. I have also included a short video for each site to help you get a ‘real’ feel for each beach. Please have a look!

#Click on any photo to see a larger version.

Top 5 Best San Diego Beaches

San Diego County Map Google Map

I would first like to state, that I am covering the entire San Diego County, (that is where the 70 miles of coast refers to.) I will be listing exciting things to do at each location.

Ready? Let’s go!


Trestles- San Onofre State Beach

Trestle Beach San Dunes Best San Diego Beaches

3929 S El Camino Real, San Clemente

Video of Trestles

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Coast to Crest Trail-San Dieguito Lagoon

San Dieguito River Del Mar

A couple of months ago, I had the pleasure of going down to the San Dieguito Lagoon in Del Mar to go walking on the Coast to Crest Trail.  Did you know that San Diego County has six coastal lagoons? The San Dieguito Lagoon is the largest of them all.

You see, this past year, I have been having a blast visiting all of the San Diego Lagoons and Nature Centers, and this was the last lagoon to visit on my list.

Coast to Crest trail sign Del Mar

Walking the Coast to Crest Trail at the San Dieguito Lagoon

The San Dieguito Lagoon is located in North County San Diego and is 21 miles north of Downtown San Diego. The lagoon is part of the San Dieguito River Park which spans over 92,000 acres!

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La Jolla Coast Walk Trail-Let’s Go!

I am ashamed to admit, that even though I have been living in the San Diego area for over 30 years, I have never heard of, much less been on, the La Jolla Coast Walk Trail.

Do not get me wrong, because I have been up and down the coast of La Jolla (pronounced La Hoya) more times than I can count. It is one of my most revered areas in San Diego hands down.  So when I came across this hiking trail while researching, I knew that I must go! Would you like to join me on a tour of the La Jolla Coast Trail?

Before we start our tour, I would like to mention that I have written extensively about walking the La Jolla coastline in a previous post- Let’s Take a La Jolla Coast Walk.

But to be fair, that post only concentrated on the area just west of Downtown La Jolla and ended at The Cave Store. Today I would like to continue the hike, by following the path past The Cave Store and walking on the official La Jolla Coast Walk Trail. Confusing? Well, I sure hope not after you finish reading this!

Ready?

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Best San Diego Birding Hotspots

Loma Alta Creek San Diego Birding

Here I  present to you a comprehensive list of the best San Diego birding hotspots. I will be including all of San Diego County starting first to the north and making my way south. Each site will consist of a link to an address; as well as, habitat type, amenities,  tour information (if available,) and finally any notable birds of interest.

Did you know that there are many free San Diego birding tours offered all over San Diego County? I will also be including any insider information that I turn up in my research; such as prime locations within each site.

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Slough What? Discovering Famosa Slough

Famosa slough sign ocean beach california

Hi! Have you ever explored a wetland before? Well, today I would like to share with you a place that you would never expect to be so wonderful-Famosa Slough in Ocean Beach. First off, what is a slough? According to the dictionary, a slough (pronounced slōō)  is a swamp or shallow lake that is usually the backwater of a larger body of water with relatively low water circulation.

In other words, we can think of a  slough as a wetland a little farther from the shore compared to say, a lagoon where the mouth opens to the ocean. Another way to look at is, is that a slough is the part of the estuary where fresh water from creeks and urban runoff mix with the salty ocean water that is transported by the tides.

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Five Hidden Gems In San Diego

Del Mar Dog Beach Hidden Gems In San Diego

I have wanted to write this post for quite some time. Ever since I started this website, I have found some gorgeous hidden gems in San Diego while out in the ‘field’ doing research, and I am here to share!

San Diego Hidden Gems? 

So what do I mean by a hidden gem? Hidden in plain sight might be a better way to put it Not much is know about it. Maybe locals are keen, but the average San Diegan and the new to town tourist have no idea.

Coastal Hidden Gems in San Diego

Also, today I am going to be concentrating just on the coastline of San Diego County- seventy miles of coast that stretches all of the ways down to the border of Mexico.

Please click on any photo to see a larger version and I have also included a video featuring each hidden gem in San Diego.

Let’s have a look at the top five places that I have on my list so far, shall we?

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Walking the Batiquitos Lagoon Trail

Batiquitos Lagoon sitting bench plants lagoon hills

Are you looking for a relatively easy trail to go hiking on in San Diego? Well, look no further as I have found the perfect spot! The Batiquitos Lagoon is between Carlsbad and Encinitas. It is one of the last saltwater marshes in Southern California. Today I will be taking you on a tour of the 3.14-mile Batiquitos Lagoon Trail.

Batiquitos Lagoon Map topography

Let’s go!

7380 Gabbiano Lane, Carlsbad

760-931-0800

Nature Center-9am-3pm daily

Batiquitos Lagoon Foundation Information

Batiquitos Lagoon Trail-A Photo Tour

I was so happy to come here for the first time. I have always been curious about this lagoon as you can see it from the Interstate 5 freeway. Here are a couple of references for you. The first is a map of the lagoon as well as a list of all possible birds that are seen here. Finally, I have also added the Self-Guided Batiquitos Trail Map which highlights several sites.

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Black’s Beach The Naked Truth

Blacks Beach Trail Blacks Beach San Diego

I remember when I was working at a coffee shop in San Diego’s Hotel Circle while in college, the number one question that the tourists would ask was, “Where is La Jolla,” followed by, “How did you get to Black’s Beach?”

Ok, so why so many inquiries?

Well,  the answer is that Black’s Beach is one of the largest public nude beaches in the United States. Just thinking about seeing naked people made me uncomfortable when I was young, so going there at that time was out of the question.

Fast forward twenty-five years later and I end up taking my two teenage daughters there!

Did I also mention that the surf is phenomenal?

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Exploring Trestles Beach Trail

Surfer trestles beach trail san onofre state beach

Trestles Beach is a collection of surf breaks located at the northern border of San Onofre State Beach. Saying that this beach is world famous is an understatement! In fact, the Hurley Pro is held here!

I went over this area a bit in a previous post on San Onofre State Beach, but today I would like to concentrate on the Beach Trail leading to Trestles Beach.

The Beach Trail going east also becomes the Panhe Nature trail, which I have also written about if you are interested.

Recently, I have been teaching myself about all of the Southern California native plant species, so today I would like to point out a few to you if you do not mind. It helps me!

Once we arrive at Trestles, I will also be showcasing the San Mateo Creek/ Lagoon which ends at the beach as well as checking out the surfers and the dunes.

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Walking The Panhe Nature Trail

Panhe Nature Trail Panoramic

Panhe Nature Trail connects the San Mateo Campground to Trestles Beach on the Northeastern border of San Onofre State Beach. Here you may witness first hand what ‘Old California ‘ used to be.

Would you like to join me for a tour?

Let’s go.

Discovering The Panhe Nature Trail

San Mateo Campground Sign Panhe Nature Trail

Panhe was one of the largest villages of the Acjachemen (Ah-HAWSH-eh-men) native people who are the original inhabitants of Southern California (12,000BC-1542 AD).

In fact, in 1769 at this spot, the first close contact between the Acjachemen,  Spanish explorers, and the Catholic Missionaries took place.  As well as the site for the very first baptism in California! The site is marked by a cross, which still stands to this day.

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Hubbs Trail Tour at Agua Hedionda Lagoon

Panoramic-Agua Hedionda Lagoon

Agua Hedionda Lagoon is forty minutes north of downtown San Diego, in the city of Carlsbad.  The lagoon is over 400 acres and is the home to numerous plants and animals, as well as a recreational playground for humans and leashed dogs!

Agua Hedionda Lagoon Google Map

There are several trails to choose from at the Agua Hedionda Lagoon. Today, we are going to explore the Hubbs Trail which is situated closest to the Ocean at the northwestern portion of the lagoon.

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Agua Hedionda Lagoon Discovery Center

Agua Hedionda Lagoon Discovery Center

I can not tell you how excited I was to go and check out the Agua Hedionda Lagoon Discovery Center! I have always been fond of this lagoon. When I used to work as a Fisheries Technician, I would find a large number of shore anglers fishing on the western edge of this lagoon.

In San Diego, there are several lagoons as well as complimentary Nature Centers filled with valuable information on local flora and fauna.

On my site here, I have a page that lists all of these Coastal Lagoons and Nature Centers in San Diego County.

It has been my goal to visit everyone! Today is the day to check out the Agua Hedionda Lagoon Discovery Center!

Let’s go!

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Showcasing the Best Beaches of La Jolla

Best Beaches of La Jolla

Today I would like to showcase a few of the best beaches of La Jolla in the hope that the beauty and wonder will encourage others to visit San Diego and experience the loveliness first hand.

 La Jolla is a seaside community situated on top of towering cliffs overlooking the Pacific Ocean located 20 minutes north of Downtown San Diego.

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