Week 271: Palos Verdes Peninsula

July 31, 2022

 AllTrails Bluff Cove to Lunada Bay Trail, 2.1 miles. 


While most of our Pacific coastline hikes offer a view of Santa Monica Bay curving south toward the Palos Verdes Peninsula, today's hike gave Barbara and me a different perspective—a look at the Bay curving north up the coastline. From the top of the Bluff Cove Trailhead at Paseo Del Mar, we had an unemcumbered northern view of the coastline communities from Redondo to Hermosa and Manhattan beaches, LAX, Santa Monica, and Malibu to Point Dume, with the Santa Monica Mountains in the background. Not to be outdone, the view of the cove below offered everything great about life along the shoreline. Surfers paddling in the water, fishermen casting off the rocks, and cruisers, sailboats, and kayaks moving across the bay—all framed by the bluffs dropping down the Palos Verdes Estates to the rocky beach. Trekking along a rocky beach isn't easy—wet pebbles, rocks, and boulders tested our balance, caution, and endurance—but it kept our eyes on the ground and our minds off distractions. This trail starts as a dirt path leading from the top of the bluff down to the ocean, then eases into a dirt/rock combo before going to all rocks on uneven terrain. We passed surfers and fishermen, romping dogs and baby crabs, a makeshift surfer monument to "Dale," a stone/branch "lounge" on the path, and two concrete sewage tunnels built into the bluff—the second, our turnaround point. More than half of the large, medium, and small rocks and stones beneath our feet had perfect circular holes dug by boring sponges, burrowing worms, or boring mollusks, evidence of the active marine life in the reserve. And the cove comes with its own soundtrack: the crackling sound of loose rocks knocking each other as the surf rolls out. Looked like a straightforward hike along the beach on paper. In person this hike was jaw-dropping stunning. Sturdy hiking shoes are a must. 





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