Posts Tagged ‘wildlife’
Our Private Tour from Los Angeles Sees the Seals
Great mounds of elephant seals lie around all day long on the narrow beaches near Cambria along the Central Coast of California. A beautiful drive up Highway 1 (the Pacific Coast Highway, El Camino Real) on a private tour from Los Angeles to visit Hearst Castle in San Simeon takes us near the Piedras Blancas rookery where these behemoths spend their land time basking in the sunshine. They don’t worry at all about solar rays exposure and swimmer safety. Even the visitors trodding along the wooden walkways seem not to disturb them. These magnificent beasts, pinnipeds, are the largest of the seal-like creatures weighing as much as 4 tons and running 20 feet long. They spend 80% of their lives in the water and are able to swim beneath the surface of the sea for as long as 100 minutes and dive to almost 5,000 feet. No wonder they loll around so languidly when they hit the beautiful beaches of California. Our tour guests enjoying an adventure along the coast can really get close to these animals once hunted nearly to extinction and now just a normal part of the ocean ecosystem along with their other relatives, harbor seals and sea lions, that we regularly see along the Los Angeles coast. Are there animals on the beach today? Just look at this webcam.
Private Tour Guests See Bald Eagles and
Deer on Their Los Angeles Tour
Our tour guides have their cameras ready at all times because we never know what we are going to see when showing our private custom tour guests around Los Angeles. In the case above, we were visiting Catalina Island, just off the Los Angeles coast, hiking along the perfect trails on a late summer day when we saw this bald eagle majestically perched above us. We did not disturb the bird and only got photos of it at rest. We also regularly see coyotes, raccoons and skunks. Bobcats and possibly mountain lions are around but we never see them. We have managed to enjoy all our hikes without running into any bears which occupy the San Gabriel Mountains above Pasadena to the north of downtown Los Angeles. But deer, both a pest and a menace to homes with well tended gardens and landscaping, are everywhere and we occasionally see them close enough for a good photograph. In the land of Bambi all our tour guests enjoy seeing the tranquil animals munching on grasses and shrubbery on the hillsides.
Los Angeles Tour Guests Love Sea Mammals.
The ocean is truly alive with large swimming creatures this year. You may be seeing all the photographs of porpoises in the waves with surfers enjoying the recent ocean swells. Every time we fly along the Los Angeles coast on one of our private helicopter tours we are treated to the sight of porpoises, sea lions, seals and often gray whales. Clouds of sea birds follow the schools of anchovies drawn to Santa Monica Bay and along the surface you see the breaching cetaceans (whales, dolphins, porpoises) and pinnipeds (seals, sea lions) swimming with the schools. It is a veritable wild animal park. They even sometimes appear to be posing for our photographs. Dolphins smile and sea lions clap.
The Wildlife of Los Angeles from Our Private Tour
Despite its large human population (almost 4 million people in 500 square miles), Los Angeles is bordered by mountains and coastline and has a great deal of open space where the deer and the coyotes all play. We often encounter these animal denizens of the metropolis on our private Los Angeles tour, particularly when we travel early in the day or find ourselves up in the park areas as the sun is setting. Deer and coyotes, of course, but raccoons, skunks, and possums are regularly seen and noted critters as we ride around Lake Hollywood (above) and Griffith Park. Bobcats are very rare but there. Bears make the news here all the time, especially nearer the San Gabriel Mountains but we have not crossed paths (luckily!). We have yet to espy a mountain lion (Beverly Hills cougars don’t count). Large birds including peacocks and parrots, once pets, now somehow free and becoming nuisance noise makers can be seen in many neighborhoods. And, let’s not forget the ocean creatures easily seen on our helicopter tours, the porpoises, seals, sea lions, whales and occasional large shark. Yes, there are all sorts of animals to be seen on a private luxury tour with us, not just the odd creatures on Hollywood Boulevard.
As long as we are talking about wildlife, permit us to mention our special helicopter tour to Wildlife Waystation, a wonderful gourmet picnic lunch visit to this marvelous facility near Los Angeles that rescues desperate animals from all around the world.