Distance: 7 miles
Hiking Time: 4 hours
Jo, Jan and Julie
The 3 J’s decided to tackle the next section of the California Coastal trail from Capitola to
We drove to
I drove us back to Capitola and we parked in a neighborhood above the village. It turns out this was really close to Jan’s house, so it was ironic that she had driven to Manresa when she could have just walked to meet us! Oh well.
We followed the railroad tracks into the village. The trestle crosses the river and gives you an interesting view of
We followed the tracks towards
Jan really enjoyed walking on the tracks and I told her about my various railroad hikes following the tracks out to
This stretch of beach is the most populated with houses most of the way. Seacliff stood out because of the cement ship. Jo knows this beach very well, since she used to spend lots of time here. There is an RV campground right on the beach and Jo plans to come and spend the winter here when she retires and moves back to
After lunch we kept walking. We came to an area that didn’t have houses and then far up ahead we could see another populated beach. We had much discussion about how far we had left to go. We asked one woman and she said, “
We kept walking past different houses and towns trying to figure out where we were. Is this Rio
Since Jan had never seen the staircase, she would ask with each one we passed, “is that it?” Jo and I discussed whether there were houses near the staircase. The weekend before we had focused on just getting to the beach and heading south. I didn’t remember any houses being nearby.
We finally got to a beach with a lifeguard and asked him how much further to the
We asked the lifeguard to take our group photo. Turns out that it was the same lifeguard whom we had asked for directions. He said, “So you made it.” He was impressed when he found out how far we had come and said, “That’s a wonderful walk”. We wondered if he had ever walked it. More likely he has driven it in his lifeguard jeep.
This section wasn’t as interesting to me because of all the houses and people. Even so, there is something calming about walking on the beach. The sand gives you a natural pedicure, the cold water washes your feet, and the rhythm of the waves is soothing, until a rogue wave gets your adrenaline racing. The sun sparkling on the water – blue sky and clouds. It is just hard to beat a day at the beach.
We climbed the stairs to Jan’s car. Jo and I laughed to see a whole housing complex next to the staircase. Neither of us had noticed it the weekend before, we had been so focused on getting to the beach and knowing we wouldn’t be back that day. Talk about oblivious!
As we drove out of
Jan dropped us of at our car above
Since we were in the old neighborhood, we decided to drive by the old beach cottages we used to rent. Jo and I had both lived there for seven years. Sadly the property was abandoned, boarded up and overgrown. It was a bittersweet moment for both of us, seeing our old homes in such a state. We remembered the good times of another lifetime. It was a reflective way to end a day of good walking.