Trailheads and Paths, Issue 8: Where The Surfers All Go

I had plenty of time, after my friend Janet left, to take in Doheny Beach and the south jetty of Dana Point Harbor, before my evening visit to San Clemente.

The titular line is from an old song, “Surfer Joe”, by the Surfaris: “Down in Doheny where the surfers all go / There’s a big, bleached blondie named Surfer Joe / He has a green surfboard with a woody to match.”  Joe’s successors were not in Doheny in abundance on the delightful afternoon of Friday, March 21, but there were about five families, a lone kite flyer and two middle-schoolers, who appeared to be brother and sister.

As is my wont, I covered various aspects of the beach park, starting with San Juan Creek.  This brackish channel is the focus of a potential desalination project- quite important in an Orange County that has faced prolonged drought.




Of course, my attention turned to the ocean, in short order.



This time around, I had my surf shoes on, so it was easy to walk about the fairly-deserted sand, and take in Doheny’s small stone jetty, and service area.







I always have an urge to see things through to the end, so I walked over to Dana Point’s stone jetty, the dividing line between the two beaches, and walked to its western terminus.  Boulder scrambling is a good way to focus one’s heart and mind.  Along the way, I encountered a couple of families fishing, one human, the other avian.  The cormorants didn’t mind being photographed.




Here is what I found at the end of the jetty.




To and from the end, I got different views of Dana Point’s beach front.





Doheny’s “dry side’ was a place of respite for some picnicking families,



and a lone kite flyer.



There are nesting herons and egrets here, as well.  The Nesting Tree, a melaleuca, is a Doheny Beach staple.



The Butterfly Garden is the icing on Doheny’s cake.  It had only a few monarchs on March 21, but there were several birds’ nests in the eucalyptuses along the trail.







There is also something magical about California coastal palms, as out of place as some find them.  They are a sign of “endless summer”, even when it’s a tad cool out.





Satisfied with this day at the beach, I took in a celebration of the Divine Springtime, Naw-Ruz, at San Clemente’s Baha’i Center.




The following two days would also be jam-packed, with visits to three Los Angeles County beach towns, then San Gabriel and its mission, and downtown Redlands.  So, after a couple of hours with my OC Baha’i friends, I headed up a surprisingly empty I-405, to Torrance, then over to Lomita, and the comfortable little motel where I stayed on my last visit to west LA.

Next:  Manhattan Beach


7 thoughts on “Trailheads and Paths, Issue 8: Where The Surfers All Go

  1. Oh Gary, I feel as if you are trying to hurt me 😦
    The photos of the beaches are so beautiful. And I love the scene all together. 🙂
    I love to read through what it means.


  2. Great pictures, Gary. What does the spring celebration involve? Sounds like it would be really interesting.

    You’re not a Saggie are you? We love to travel.


    • Naw-Ruz is a long-standing Persian tradition, adopted by the Baha’is worldwide, as the beginning of our liturgical year. It also signals the end of our nineteen-day Fasting period, when those between the ages of 15-70 abstain from food and drink, from sun-up to sundown. We have a celebration of scriptural readings, song, possibly a short dramatic presentation and, of course, lots of great food and beverages (but nothing alcoholic).
      Yes, I am a Sagittarian.


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