When my aunt suggested a family trip over to the coast to check out the Monarch butterflies that make their annual migration their I realized that although I had driven past numerous times I had never stopped to witness this for myself. The grove we visited in Pismo is easy enough to find, clearly marked by signs with docents to show you all about the butterflies.
At first I only saw a few butterflies landing on nearby trees, then I spotted several spotting scopes pointing upward towards the higher branches. Looking up I saw a lot of dead leaves hanging from an evergreen tree?
out of place leaves
I went back to the car for my telephoto lens and lo and behold, here was what we had come to see.
Next we headed north along the coast to check out the elephant seals and along the way spotted a hawk.
Hawk taking flight
Then we stopped to see the elephant seals, in January they have pups so there were lots of little ones on the beach.
young pup scratches
Angela on top of the world
Nearby Heron keeping an eye on me
We stopped for dinner at the Mexican restaurant we’d eaten at the last time we visited the elephant seals and I was able to get some more great humming bird pics.
Joshua wanted clam chowder though so after dinner we headed into Cambria for second dinner. The Old Stone station(used to be a gas station) had great reviews of their clam chowder and we were not disappointed.
old stone station
We also drove up the hill to take a look at the historic Nit Wit ridge house.
Dad at nit wit ridge
It was a beautiful day at the coast but eventually we headed home to the valley.