Chumash land: just the way it always was…
Spanish imperialism: all of your earths is ours now
Mission San Miguel: we graze our cattle on all your lands now
Mexican land grant: all of your ground is Mr. Pico’s now
George Hearst: I found gold, I buy your dirt from Pico.
Willam Randalph Hearst: Thanks dad, I like big castles
California state parks: Thanks king Hearst, we like beaches.
That’s my nutshell of the entire human history of this piece of coast dating back as far as we can know. Well, that and the Portuguese whaling community that made use of this convenient bay and the deepwater beyond to manhandle 370 whales into lifeless economic commodities in just 10 years. Yikes.
All told, it’s a very sheltered beach on a rugged windswept and swell-pounded coastline. A convenient place to build a wharf for offloading materials to build, oh say… a castle, or something like that.
Now there’s still a wharf there today. And ghosts from other eras still linger beside the towering Eucalpytus. History has unfolded at a different pace here than most places on the coast, and it’s tangible.