Our 30 seconds of fame inside the La Jolla Sea Cave

It’s been a busy week-end at the beast headquarters. It all started with puuuurfect weather (what else, this is San Diego after all) and another meet-up with our new intrepid RVing buddies Lu & Terry from Paint Your Landscape. Our mission this time was to go kayaking at La Jolla Sea Caves.

Now this little expedition is something that’s been on my list for a while. La Jolla boasts 7 littoral (formed by wave action) Sea Caves that are part of the massive San Diego-La Jolla Underwater Park which spans 6,000 acres (24 km2) of ocean bottom and tidelands in La Jolla Cove.

All dressed up and stylin’ to go

The area is a pristine ecological preserve that allows snorkeling, scuba diving, kayaking, paddle-boarding and swimming. Because of it’s status as an ecological preserve (no fishing, littering etc.) and an abundance of reef and underwater Giant Kelp this area has a uniquely high concentration of sea life. It’s one of the must see things in San Diego, but you can only go inside the caves with a guide. Since we were only going once this seemed like the thing to do, so despite my natural avoidance of all things touristy, both Lu and I agreed to go in with a tour.

The group huddles for a talk from the guide

Now if you’ve read Lu’s post on the day you already know what’s coming. It was literally the puuuurfect day for  kayaking -> blue sky, light breeze, calm water and warm T-shirt weather sunshine. The water was fabulous, the views spectacular and I had moments of pure ocean bliss paddling the water with my feet pointed to the wide, blue horizon.

Traffic jam at the Sea Cave

But the tour, sorry to say, was a bomb. Despite the company claiming they only take out “small groups” we must have had ~20 kayaks in our group, and once we got to the sea caves there was a back-up of at least 3 other groups to get in. We waited, and waited, and waited….and then paddled in for….less than 30 seconds of sitting inside one cave before being directed to go back out. That was pretty much the tour done. I fear all the tour companies in the area are similar in this respect.

Sea Lions having out near the caves

Now we did get to see dolphins, sea lions and amaze ourselves at the Giant Kelp that grows in the cove (one of the few spots in the world!), but all of that would probably have been more relaxing without the tour group. My advise is most definitely to go, but to bring your own kayak or rent without a guide and take your own fine time around the bay. You can explore and enjoy the whole area except for going physically inside the caves.

Back home we wasted away the rest of the week-end doing taxes (oh, the joy of it all). All I can say on that topic is that I am, yet again, incredibly thankful to be resident of a no-tax state and have full-time RV tax benefits that we take advantage of. Our other little hic-up was that someone stole my 15-year old mountain bike right from outside our RV. Now this bike, if you’ve ever seen it, might well be the ugliest and most rusty thing still turning on wheels so why anyone would want to steal it is beyond me. And in 2 years of RVing (and being quite lax about our outdoor equipment) we’ve never had a single item taken. It’s a total freak event and won’t likely change how we operate, but for purely sentimental reasons I miss the old girl. Then again, it’ll probably be nice to get a new bike…oh, and did I mention it…the weather is puuuurfect :)

A moment of ocean bliss

Giant Kelp -> one of La Jolla’s natural wonders

24 Responses to Sea Kayaking La Jolla, Taxes and Losing A Bike

  1. Freddie says:

    Awesome pics!

  2. Sorry about your bike being stolen. Your day out at the Cove looks like something Bob and I will do, but in our Sea Eagle. We can manage not going into the cave. I, too, hate those big group outings, but you picked a fabulous day to do it.

  3. Is the tax credit on installation only, or on components, too?

    Bummer on the bike-stealing. It’s not just the loss of the item, there’s a dramatic dip in the way I see the world in the aftermath. I usually rebound, but I feel that loss more than the thing stolen. So, if that happens to you, I hope you’re also rebounding quickly.

    Roxanne
    The Good Luck Duck

    • libertatemamo says:

      You can take the credit on the whole enchillada, baby!! We deducted all equipment and installation from last year’s taxes.

      And I know what you mean about seeing things a little different after something like this. It definitely bums me out to have had something stolen. It was an old item and I’ll recover quickly so I’m not worried, but I did feel my heart drop a bit when I saw it was gone.

      Nina

  4. Linda Sand says:

    Try to think of the bike’s disappearance as someone needing emergency transportation feeling grateful to you for providing it. And/or as creating an opportunity for you to upgrade your transportation. Or anything else you can tell yourself to make a perceived negative into a positive. After all, it’s all small stuff–except maybe to the person who had that emergency.

    • libertatemamo says:

      Well, I’m not sure I can be magnanimous enough to think of it going to someone with need, but I can definitely manage to think of it as a chance for an equipment upgrade :)
      Nina

  5. Sheila says:

    Absolutely beautiful! Howard and I experienced our first Kayak adventure a couple of weeks back at Rainbow Springs State Park in Dunnellon, FL. What a fun activity!! We rented a two-sitter; I want a Yellow or Lime Green one of my very own.

    Nina, so sorry about losing “the old girl”! How shameful of someone.

    PS. We don’t always write, but know that we always read your blog and appreciate it very much!!!!!

    • libertatemamo says:

      So happy you guys are still reading. And GREAT that you got to experience your first kayak in FL!! You know here in San Diego there’s even an outfit that does kayaking w/ dogs. We’re looking into doing that next w/ Polly.
      Nina

  6. Sandie says:

    I don’t comment often, but having a bike stolen is just the pits. I don’t care how old or rusty it was. We had someone steal a tool box from us but it had a big hole in it where Jim had melted it somehow and only a couple of tools he hadn’t moved to the new tool box. But it was still the idea that someone would take it from us. Love your pictures. I really don’t like tours with lots of people unless there is no other choice.

    • libertatemamo says:

      You’re so right Sandie. It’s not the object that bums me out so much as the act (stealing). I’ll get over it, but can’t help feeling a little down.
      Nina

  7. jil mohr says:

    As trusting as we are, and being ex new yorkers…we always lock our rv…if nothing else it is a deterrent(sp) cause if someone wants it bad enough they will find a way…bummer about the bike…but like you said bad news…good nes…the kaying tour sounded horrible too…we like you would rather rent a kayak and go on our own….as for taxes….enuf said….

    • libertatemamo says:

      We usually lock the RV too, but I have to admit I’m lax about the outside bikes esp. since they’re both old and rusted. It’s wierd too…no-one locks their bikes in this RV park and yet mine was the only one stolen? They even left Paul’s bike which is a MUCH nicer bike than mine. Go figure!
      Nina

  8. Steve & Gari says:

    We love your sea kayaking adventure! We don’t like your stolen bike :(
    We are fellow paddlers, in an Old Town Discovery 167, “Red”. We purchased Red 25 years ago slightly used for $300; I believe the best investment we’ve ever made. Had too numerous to count priceless experiences like your sea kayak expedition. Keep havin’ fun!

    • libertatemamo says:

      $300 for a kayak…GREAT deal. We’re seriously thinking about getting an inflatable kayak. We’ve spent so much time (esp. this past year) near spots with water that I’m sure we could have gotten alot of enjoyment out of it. If we can get Polly to go along I think we’ll do it! She’s had her first ride last year in a friend’s kayak (back in Astoria OR) and did real well.
      Nina

  9. We do agree it was a perfect day, particularly the company. Thanks again for joining us. So sorry to hear about your bike. We have not had anything stolen while RVing but have lost a bike to theft some years back. Hopefully you can replace her with something great.

    Wonderful post Nina, as always. We thoroughly enjoy everything you write.

  10. rommel says:

    Ow there were only two of us when I was there in La Jolla. I knew there plenty more of natural beauty La Jolla offers, just didn’t know exactly like what you shared here. Anywho, I still enjoyed my visit there watching the birds and the seagull, and my stop at the Birch Aquarium.

    • libertatemamo says:

      Definitely enjoyed your pics from the acquarium on your blog! Nice that you had the place to yourself when you were here.
      Nina

  11. Nina, a little sad to read about your bike…but you have a good attitude… Kelly

  12. Bob says:

    Bike thieves just make me want to SPIT! And that’s all I’ll put in print! Gah! I had “New and Shiny” stolen within the first two months of ownership when we were living in the Netherlands, and I was vacillating between anger and disappointment. My wife was much more laid back about the whole thing with her “It’s only a bike” attitude, but I was pissed!
    Seems there are some 700,000 bikes stolen in the Netherlands each year. That wasn’t much of a consolation.
    I replaced it (hey, it’s KIND of important to have a bike in the Netherlands?) and have been damned vigilant ever since. I’m sure if anyone even looked twice at the new “New and Shiny”, I’d probably lose it. You’re much more laid back. Of course, shopping for and replacing a 20 year old bike is something to look forward to.
    Sucks about the “Tour”. I’m not much of a tourist, for just that reason.
    Enjoy your sunshine!

  13. What a beautiful but disappointing day! We’ve had similarly lousy tours, but not that bad. At least you did enjoy much of the kayaking.

  14. Karen says:

    What a great place to kayak. I put it on my Pinterest board to get to some day.

  15. [...] thing that happend is I’ve been looking for a new bike ever since my last one was stolen in San Diego in March. N0-one seemed to have the bike or size I was looking for, even here in Eugene. Well on a whim on [...]

  16. [...] in her future). Our next day out we switched pace and went kayaking in gorgeous La Jolla Bay. We learned our lesson from our last visit and rented from Bike & Kayak insted of taking a tour this time, opting for a liesurely 2-hour [...]

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