See the full list of tidepooling posts for more pictures of what you can see at Abalone Cove Shoreline Park. The tide pools there are exposed whenever the low tide is -1.0 or more feet below the mean low tide. (0 means the low tide that day is the same as the annual mean low tide.) The NOAA 2009 and 2010 tide tables for Los Angeles yielded this information.
This is our lucky week because the west coast of the US is experiencing some of our lowest daylight tides of the year and school is out!
12/29/2009Tue 01:59PM LST -1.1 L
12/30/2009Wed 02:40PM LST -1.5 L
12/31/2009Thu 03:21PM LST -1.7 L
01/01/2010Fri 04:00PM LST -1.7 L
01/02/2010Sat 04:42PM LST -1.5 L
01/03/2010Sun 05:24PM LST -1.1 L
01/26/2010Tue 01:03PM LST -0.7 L
01/27/2010Wed 01:42PM LST -1.3 L
01/28/2010Thu 02:21PM LST -1.6 L
01/29/2010Fri 02:58PM LST -1.8 L
01/30/2010Sat 03:35PM LST -1.6 L
01/31/2010Sun 04:12PM LST -1.3 L
02/01/2010Mon 04:48PM LST -0.8 L
02/26/2010Fri 01:54PM LST -1.3 L
02/27/2010Sat 02:29PM LST -1.3 L
02/28/2010Sun 03:03PM LST -1.1 L
Don't live in LA? No problem. NOAA has the tide tables for the entire US right here.
Here's a blurb I wrote for Iris' school newsletter:
Tidepooling with Kids at Abalone Cove
Did you know we live near one of the best tide pool areas in
? The tide pools of Abalone Cove, near Point
Vicente on the California , are exposed whenever the
tide is 1 foot below mean lower low water (low tide). These especially low tides occur during daylight
hours mainly in the winter months. Palos Verdes
If you look at the NOAA tide tables for Los Angeles, you will see that tides lower than -1.0 (feet below mean low tide) rarely occur during daylight hours. Yet, those are the only conditions that expose the tidepools at
Take a look at the gorgeous photos in Steve's slide
show. Abalone Cove
The park is a nice place for a picnic any day of the year. But, on days with especially low tides, it pays to get there at least an hour or two before the lowest tide time. This ensures enough time to park and walk down to the rocks. (Get there even earlier and you will have time for a picnic before scrambling on the rocks.)
The highest tide pools will become exposed about an hour before the minimum tide, and you can watch the sea anemones close as the water recedes. As peak low tide approaches, more and more sea creatures will become exposed to view. Our family has found octopuses, sea hares, limpets, mussels, sea urchins, sea stars, brittle stars, sea worms, hermit crabs, and myriad birds and sea plants.
Wear sturdy shoes that can get wet. The rocks can get slippery so you want to wear shoes with a good grip. Protect your family from the sun with hats and long-sleeved shirts, but leave the chemical sunscreens at home. Those contain chemicals that make the sea creatures sick.
You can find more info about Abalone Cove from the park website:
Park admission is $5 per car; this is a cheap excursion if you carpool.
Abalone Cove is a protected area, and it has made a little bit of a recovery since the 1970s from the heavy pollution in that area. But the tide pools are in jeopardy from poachers and ocean acidification from increased CO2 levels. Don’t miss this opportunity to show your children this ecosystem while we still have it.
“Take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but footsteps.”