Our Santa Cruz Island Adventure

While we usually greet Monday mornings like two sprint runners competing in the 100-meter dash, this Monday was different. Instead of heading to work, we were heading out for a Santa Cruz Island adventure with a day of hiking, nature watching and soaking up the seascape in store. Having already experienced the island’s magnificent sea caves by kayak this was our first chance to explore the island on foot.

"Island Adventure" waits at the dock while we get ready for the one hour ride from Ventura Harbor. Weather is definitely in our favor today.

Passengers settle in while Captain Dave Corey, a 10-year Island Packer’s veteran, describes the journey and introduces the crew ...

Captain Corey alerts us with an “uh-oh, we've got visitors…" when two Humpback whales decide to pay us a visit before we reach the island. We got some good video of them...

On land again at Scorpion’s Bay, we are free to explore the island on our own after brief instructions from Channel Island National Park guide, Marty Flam. We opt to join Marty for an informative guided hike.

Headed out to Cavern Point bluff, we pass one of the island’s two campgrounds. Channel Islands camping is considered "wilderness camping" since there are no services and you must carry in all your camping supplies by foot.

Lichen covered rocks create interesting orange colored markers along the winding trial as do the fields of bright mustard colored blooms. They add a plash of spectacular spring color on the hillside.

Along the trail, we keep an eye out for the Channel Islands Fox. A species unique to the Channel Islands, the fox is much smaller than its mainland cousin. About the size of a housecat and unlike the mainland fox the Channel Islands fox is frequently spotted during the day, but she eluded us today.

150ft above the bay, Cavern Point provides a spectacular view of Santa Cruz Island. We’re careful not to get too close to the steep edge and find a romantic spot to munch on a quick snack before heading back down the trail.

Continuing down the trail loop, the view on this side turns out to be just as spectacular, with Spring flowers in the foreground and neighboring Anacapa Island in the distance.

By the time we get to the end of the trail, it's already time to re-board the Island Adventure, which has returned from it's last stop on Santa Cruz Island, Prisoner's Harbor. 

Dolphins race along side our boat as we cross the Channel back to Ventura Harbor. We call this video "Nascar at Sea"...

As we re-enter the harbor, we are treated to a view of Two Trees over Marina Park that you can't see from land. Ahh…not bad for a Monday!

Here's a map and more info on Santa Cruz Island trails..

Click here to go on your own Island Adventure

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