Seal BeachPosted: March 16, 2008
There is this great little swimming beach in La Jolla called Children’s Pool that is just perfect for kids. In fact, it was built especially for kids. There’s a wall surrounding most of the beach so that the surf is pretty low. Ownership of the beach transfered to San Diego city with an 1931 trust that stipulated that the city maintain the beach as a place for children. It turns out that it’s also a great place for harbor seal babies as well. There is a colony of harbor seals that have literally taken over the beach. It’s illegal to approach marine mammals, plus seal poop has made the water pretty unhealthy, so the beach is now off-limits to people.The rub is, that technically the city has violated the terms of the original trust transferring ownership. There have been various local and state court rulings alternately ordering the city to dredge the sand at Children’s Pool (thus kicking out the seals) or allowing the city to not dredge the sand. When we were there, there was a rope demarcating how close you could get to the seals. At other times the rope has not been allowed and the seal supporters have literally drawn a line in the sand instead. We’re in favor of letting the seals have this one beach and letting people have all the other great beaches in San Diego. The day that we took these pictures was pretty cold and windy, and without the seals there definitely would not have been anybody at the beach. However, as you can see in the top picture, there were plenty of people there just to see the seals. When we go snorkeling, it’s usually just around the point from Children’s Pool and the seals will come around there as well. Seeing them in their natural habitat and even actually swimming with them is way better than either the zoo or Sea World.