Saturday, December 29, 2012

Southern California Christmas

A willet at sunset on Manhattan Beach
I spent my first ever Christmas in California visiting family.  The temps were in the 50s and low 60s and rainy in the evenings.  Quite a difference from South Dakota's December temps.  We were able to spend some time at Manhattan Beach's pier for sunset shots one evening.  The surf was up and there were a handful of surfers showing their stuff close to the pier.  A few days later we went on a whale watching boat tour, but were skunked.  We did see a lot of birds, some harbor seals and a single sea lion though.  It was a windy day and the sea was rough.  Even though we didn't see any whales, I still really enjoyed being out on the rolling sea.  Here are a few photos from the trip.  Click on an image for a larger file to view and thanks for checking in. 

Manhattan Beach Pier at sunset. On the extreme right of the photo just off the edge of the pier, you can see a surfer waiting for a wave.

This image was taken with a much longer exposure as above to smooth out the surf and give the water an interesting ethereal look.

I followed this shorebird (I believe it is called a willet) along until he was lined up with the setting sun's reflection on the water's edge for this silhouette shot.

This Heerman's Gull glided just above our whale watching ship for a few minutes as we exited Long Beach Harbor.

Harbor seals soaking up the sun.

A lighthouse along the outer barrier of Long Beach Harbor.

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