Between Storms: Visit to Pomponio Beach
Story & photos by John Vonderlin
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Pomponio Creek was running high and had formed a lagoon at its beach. While where the creek entered the ocean was easily fordable, I didn’t feel like clomping around in my rubber boots, so I used the “People’s Bridge” to cross it. This natural bridge, formed by a large tree trunk that spans the creek right below Highway 1, allows access to the southern portion of the beach without bushwhacking or wading.
If you’re allergic to poison oak or hate to get your feet wet it’s a handy, if slightly derring-do, method to reach the best flotsam-collecting area.
This particular day a crab pot buoy with its attached 150- foot rope heavily entangled in kelp was the only prize I found. The rope was the most tar-fouled one I’ve ever seen. The tar was substantially different from the tar balls that came ashore a few weeks ago. It was stickier and smelled different. I suspect it was the remnants of the heavy fuel oil from the Cosco Busan. That’s fine with me though, as that gives it more cachet when I use it in my still-growing “Battering Ram” artplay project. That’s the one composed of battered, oozing creosote, telephone or power poles, that I wrap in coils of the rope I recover and untangle. Enjoy. John