Friday, June 14, 2013

Seal Rock State Park - Tidal Pools

Roger here...  When we first arrived in the Newport area, I jotted down the times for the lowest of the low tides.  Why?  I knew that those times would be best for viewing the life in the tidal pools.  Low tide this morning was at 9:34 a.m.  We decided to walk the dogs quickly and make the short nine-mile drive to Seal Rock State Park, known for its crashing waves and extensive tidal pools.

If you slide back up to the opening picture, you can see the tidal pool area on the beach toward the left side of the photo.  Most of the pictures in this post were taken in that area.  All of it is completely under water when the tide is up.

A short paved walkway led us down to the beach from the parking area.

After accessing the sandy beach, we passed by a couple of interesting spots before reaching the tidal pools.  All of the green plants laying on the sand in this photo would be under water at high tide and standing upright.

It was difficult to tear ourselves away from the pounding surf as it crashed into the rocks that were just off-shore.

The beach was littered with these opaque white tube-like organisms.  There were so many that it was difficult to avoid stepping on them.  I grew up in Indiana, far from any ocean, and am having trouble identifying them from the tidal pool websites.  In some of the pools, they were clinging to the plants.  Animal? Plant? Any ideas?

When we arrived at the tidal pool area, it was obvious that the tide was still receding.  In the shot below you can see the pool of water behind the waterfall.  All the water was still flowing toward the ocean.

The entire space had a kind of other-worldly aura.

The animal-life in the tidal pools was amazing.  As a former science teacher, I knew that anemones were fascinating animals that have the look of plants.   I did not know that they were so brightly colored.  Most of the ones we saw this day were a bluish-green color.  The one above was the size of a baseball.  The guy below stood out under the clear water.

Here is a good look at a smaller pink one.

They were not difficult to find. They were pretty much everywhere in the tidal pool area.  We did not have to be quiet.  We did not have to wait patiently for them to appear.  All we had to do was look into the pools.

If we did not see anemones, we saw starfish --- hundreds of purple and orange starfish clinging to any available surface.

Dianne liked this secretive fella hiding behind the kelp.

Such an interesting place.  Who knew that starfish were not the color of sand, like the dead skeletons I used to find on the Florida beaches.

After a while, the tide shifted and the beach began to disappear.  One last look at the roaring waves before heading back.

 After our morning at the beach, we decided to eat a late lunch.  We went back to the Rogue Brewery with its view of the Newport Harbor.  I had a sampler of four different four ounce Rogue beers with my sandwich.

The pet picture of the day is a close-up of our "salty dog" Bandido after a run on the beach. 


Lori Moore said...

Beautiful pictures ! One of my favorite things to do is explore tide pools. We have many here in Southern California. I think that little white worm looking creature could be a "sea slug". There are many different types/colors.

Chuck and Anneke's RV travels said...

Sure is a lot of life at low tide:)

Bill and Nancy said...

Wonderful the beach because everyday is different. Mother nature redecorates about every twelve hours;o))

Mary Tipton said...

Beautiful pictures! I have never explored tidal pools, but after seeing your photos, I believe I will start!