Flashback! Julia Pfeiffer Burns in the 1960s

July 19, 2016

Just a few shots from the days before traffic jams and crowds…

Scan

At the Waterfall House with my mother and sister in 1966. Notice how the waterfall drops directly into the ocean. The beach formed after a 1983 landslide put a huge amount of material into the ocean just to the north.

JG 1

Mom and Sis on the terrace.

Brown House

Leading Mom around the house (I think this photo is from 1963). To get there, we rode down from the Highway on the funicular car.


Steelhead Lose Again at Carmel River Mouth

January 11, 2016

IMG_0450

Slowly rising lagoon

A few days ago, everything was working out perfectly for the Carmel River’s remnant steelhead population. With the San Clemente Dam gone, the door was open for more young steelhead smolts to safely reach the lagoon, and eventually the sea, than had been possible for many years. Then, relatively gentle rains put enough flow in the river to provide easy fish passage from the higher elevation tributaries to the lagoon, but not enough to breach the high summer sandbar at the lagoon mouth. Behind the bar, the slowly filling lagoon was becoming an ideal habitat for young steelhead to undergo the rapid growth and physiological changes necessary to survive at sea. Read the rest of this entry »


November Surf in December

December 11, 2015

IMG_0174

A swell that peaked at 30 feet last night combined with a 6.5 foot high tide to bring ground-shaking waves ashore on Carmel Point this morning. Read the rest of this entry »


Coastal Commission to Weigh in on Carmel Beach Fires

December 8, 2015

IMG_4121

Carmel Beach

If you’re sitting at a city council meeting and hear the mayor proudly describe how he got the head of a government agency to write a letter threatening to take enforcement action against the city, you’re probably not really in Bizarro World or the Twilight Zone; you’re just in Carmel and the item on the agenda is beach fires. Read the rest of this entry »


Carmel Prepares to Ban Beach Fires Once and For All

November 30, 2015

DSC06787

A summer evening on the Carmel Beach

If there’s one activity that pretty much defines what it means to be human, it’s sitting around a fire. Your parents did it, their parents did it, and so did everyone else in your family tree going back for as many as 1.7 million or more years – a time long before anyone remotely resembling a modern person even existed. Until quite recently, it was something that nearly everyone did nearly every day. Read the rest of this entry »


Up Against the Wall: Steelhead and the Carmel Lagoon Ecosystem Protective Barrier

February 9, 2015

Reeds

The Carmel River Lagoon in 1947 (Laidlaw Williams photo)

There’s been some uproar lately over the plan to build a flood barrier in the Carmel River Lagoon and people have been asking on social media and elsewhere why anyone would propose to place such an assumed-to-be-ugly wall along the northern margin of such a beautiful wetland. A better question may be whether we can find a way to live our lives that doesn’t prevent steelhead from living at all. Either way, it’s a long story… Read the rest of this entry »


Martins Beach Tidelands Declared Private Property

May 29, 2014

DSC09300

Ed Ghandour claims ownership of the beach

A little over a year ago, we discussed Monterey Bay Eco-Resort developer, Ed Ghandour’s claim that his rights under a Mexican land grant gave him ownership of the beach in front of his proposed resort; a claim that sought to undo at least 1,500 years of legal precedent firmly establishing tidelands as public property.

That argument became a lot more serious last fall as lawyers for billionaire, Vinod Khosla, who has been excluding the public from the long-popular Martins Beach near Half Moon Bay, got a San Mateo County judge to issue an order finding that Khosla owns Martins Beach, tidelands and all. Read the rest of this entry »