Tide Pooling Hike Rescheduled

Written by Estero Bay News

March 1, 2024

Bad weather canceled a planned hilltop nature walk by the Cayucos Land Conservancy as the CLC rescheduled it for later in March, but they are planning to go tide pooling on Estero Bluffs Park next week.

The CLC will follow retired PG&E biologist and tide pool expert, Sally Krenn, who low leads nature walks as a State Parks Volunteer; along with retired Morro Bay High teacher and marine biologist, Faylla Chapman, to explore the untouched tide pools of Estero Bluffs State Park (located on Hwy 1 just north of Cayucos). 

The excursion is set for 2-4 p.m. Saturday, March 8. Meet on Hwy 1 at the old windmill at San Geronimo Creek and hike down the trail to the shore. 

The Estero Bluffs ride pools are home to a wide variety of invertebrate marine species, as well as the limitless possibilities of what has washed ashore with the tide.

Hiking poles are useful for walking through the bluff. Be ready to get your shoes wet and no dogs allowed. Rain cancels. Attendance is limited and RSVP is required. Email to: hello@cayucoslandconservancy.org to sign up.

Also, Dr. Joel Germond will lead a walk to the top of Hollywood Hill in Southern Cayucos set for 10 a.m. Friday, March 22.

Meet at end of Hacienda Drive by the County’s new water tanks.

A.k.a. “Hang Glider Hill” the ridge high above Cayucos is host to an amazing biodiversity, invisible to motorists rushing by on Hwy 1 far below.

Badgers, mountain lions and over 75 species of birds have reportedly been seen in these environs. The hike will go through coastal chaparral, grassy hillsides and along a thicket of willow and honeysuckle.  

Dr. Germond — neither a biologist nor an expert — has “been an avid lover and observer of nature since childhood. Since moving to the area in 2007, he has focused on learning to identify and photograph all the interesting biodiversity of the California Central Coast. Now semi-retired, Dr. Germond is a ceramicist and licensed clinical psychologist who hikes daily with his wife, Paolina Aligero, a retired social worker and avid nature lover as well.

The hike starts with a brief program explaining the CLC’s attempts to purchase and retire numerous so-called “paper lots” that were drawn up decades ago but have been deemed too steep and the hillside too subject to slippage, to be buildable. Over the years, the County has bought up the lots as they go into tax default for non-payment, and CLC has been an active participant in this endeavor.

This walk is not flat; the pace is slow and the trail is fairly steep. Good hiking shoes are required and hiking poles are recommended. Plan on two hours (it’s OK to return early on your own). No RSVP required.

The CLC is an accredited non-profit conservation organization responsible for working to preserve the greenbelt around the town of Cayucos. Among its accomplishments is the preservation of Estero Bluffs Park (which had been slated for a huge housing development); and working with others to preserve the Chevron Dog Beach (the only dog-friendly, off-leash beach in the county). Dog Beach is now under the overview of the City of Morro Bay.

See: www.cayucoslandconservancy.org for more information about the conservancy and its upcoming events.

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