We thought we had failed in our quest to find “paradise” but decided to take a layover day anyway. Then this beach turned out to be a pretty interesting place after all! Everyone ended up collecting handfuls of the little black obsidian pebbles. A steep cliff behind us cast a cool shadow through the middle of the day. John easily caught fish for dinner. I decided to hike the arroyo even though I started in the middle of the day, leaving at 11:00 AM and turning back at 12:00 noon. There was a large flat “road” down the middle made of sand left by the last rain in this area, perhaps years ago. Apparently there is some source of water because there were lots of trees, flowers and lots of other life. Birds of course, including one family of California Quail who I was happy to see because their numbers are decreasing in my California! Little chipmunks or squirrels of some sort ran away from me. Near the turn back point of my walk I saw a deer! A buck with at least two points on each side. The arroyo snaked back and forth up into the hills with an amazingly flat floor. The easy walking surface convinces me that I hiked 3 miles or more in the hour I allotted myself. My altimeter says that I only climbed 200 feet in that distance. The rest of the day, morning and evening, I spent lazing about reading and catching up on my journal.
I set the frame of my tent up as a drying rack when we landed and didn’t hang the tent on it until after dark. Shining my flashlight around at the gravel I thought I saw little black beans lying everywhere. It looked like someone had dropped a handful of black coffee beans into the gravel. I stared to be upset that someone had spilled food in front of my tent, which might attract animals. But when I picked one up they turned out to be black obsidian pebbles in the gravel!