Since Gino Thomas' accident at Point Bonita there has been a lot of interest in paddling this area some more. Geoffrey Smart scheduled another trip to duplicate the same trip, without anyone getting smashed up on the rocks this time. Don Barch scheduled a trip to paddle from Muir Beach into Horseshoe Bay, which involves paddling around Point Bonita. I was unable to attend Geoffrey's paddle but joined Don on his.
This is a beautiful section of coastline with caves and arches to paddle through when the waves are calm enough to allow it. We landed at Rodeo Beach for lunch and paddled through the cave in Bird Rock. As you come out the other side of this cave you see your first view of the Point Bonita Lighthouse. Compared to Gino's adventure this was a calm an uneventful paddle and we got to go through most of the caves. Don and Ken Mannshardt paddled so close to shore around Point Bonita that they were well inside where the impact zone had been for Gino.
When we turned around the point we hugged the shore on our way to the Golden Gate. There was a dead whale on one of the beaches between Point Bonita and The Bridge and Penny Wells wanted to see if she could collect a piece of baleen for her shell and bone collection. We discovered that there wasn't just one dead whale but three of them on three different beaches! I watched while Ken landed next to one whale and came back with a piece of baleen strapped on his deck. Some of these whales had been there for a while and smelled terrible so I stayed away. One of them had been partially buried in the beach by the waves and it just looked like a layer of white fat sandwiched between layers of dark sand.