Kayaking Monterey Bay and Chillaxin with the Sea Otters
First off, if you ever get to travel to California, GO TO Monterey Bay.
There is this huge canyon underwater, right off the coast. This thing is even bigger than the Grand Canyon, only it’s underwater. Monterey Bay is also a sea otter sanctuary, and when they say that, they aren’t kidding. You cannot hang out on the beach in Monterey Bay and not see some sort of sea mammal, with your naked eye. There are sea otters, harbor seals, and sea lions GALORE here.
See, Monterey Bay has a kelp forrest, and the sea otters live in it. They even sleep in it. When we were kayaking, we’d see their little noses, asleep, poking out of the water. I was so nervous I was going to not see one and whack it with my paddle. (Don’t worry. I didn’t.)
The quality of these photos isn’t great. We took them with Alan’s cell phone. We did zoom in on these, so we weren’t as close as it appears in the photos…most of the time.
This one is my favorite. The sea otters are very social, so you find them in groups, or “rafts.” Did you know that these guys are one of the few animals in the world that use objects as tools? They will get a stone and use it as a tool to break open the shells of their yummy sea food.
The sea gulls know what good little fisher-otters they are, so they sometimes harass them for their scraps. We humans know how you feel, dear fuzzy little otters.
There are laws. We aren’t supposed to come within 100 feet of the wildlife. That’s impossible if you are on a kayak. They will come to you. If you sit still too long, they might even hop up and join you! No, that did not happen to us. I would have FREAKED out. I LOVE them, but I respect them.
Actually, I spent a whole lot of my kayaking adventure a little freaked out, and yet I loved it so much. It was thrilling. You are just paddling along, and suddenly *splash* up pops a seal, staring at you. There was one that I’m telling you, was definitely stalking us!
It’s hard to see it in this photo, but look closely in the middle, you might see a little nose poking out of the water. Actually, it’s more like a big face with the nose pointing up. Do you see it? Gray blob. In the middle. We saw several sleeping faces on our adventure.
Monterey also has this long rock wharf that sea lions LIVE on. We paddled over there to get a look, but being close to that many sea lions kind of scared me, and we paddled away.
I did feel like we were invading their privacy.
At one point, two of the sea otters began mating, an activity which took the pair almost all the way to the sand, with the mother sea otter’s previous baby following them all the way, screaming at the top of his lungs…It was all a little unsettling and embarrassing–a real life discovery channel special.
If getting this close doesn’t sound like something you want to do, but you would love to watch the otters and seals, I have another discovery to share: The Fish Hopper Restaurant in Monterey. It has huge windows overlooking the bay. I saw sea otters, seals, and sea lions all while eating my clam chowder. So much fun!!!
Thank you, Alan, for taking me out to do this! I can’t wait to do it again!!
I love pelicans too!
We were stretching our necks up at each other. They seem to be just as interested in us as we are in them!
A few other photos of Monterey Bay:
My dad took this one. His cell phone camera is way better than Alan’s! Plus: no fog. There’s a fog that hangs around here off and on, every day, especially in the morning and evening.
Daniel and the cutest little wetsuit ever
Ninja John David wishes you all a wonderful rest of the week:
I guess turtles are his favorite. Haven’t seen any of those around here yet…
Want to see more of beautiful Monterey? Try these posts:
Monterey: 42 Beautiful photos
Carmel: Photos of Carmel Valley & 17 Mile Drive
California: Our 1st 3 Weeks in California Photoblog