Visiting the Forbidden Zone in Point Reyes Seashore, California
Saturday, October 25th, 2008: The sun beats down on those gathered to watch an excavator scoop away the last crumbling chunks of historic earth keeping the waters of Tomales Bay from reclaiming 560+ acres of tidal wetlands. Levied to create cow pastures in the 1940s, these former tidal mudflats and marshlands hadn't known the saline embrace of the sea for many a moon. Today: This open space's character is changing daily. Non-native grasses wither away under the onslaught of saltwater, while pickleweed and marsh plants take over. Ducks (sometimes thousands) dot newly created tidal ponds. Bald eagles and marsh hawks soar over egrets and herons wading in slow motion. The Giacomini Wetlands can be viewed from strategically placed, yet somewhat limited trails and viewing areas, or (even better) from a kayak at high tide, gliding through areas where the human foot is now forbidden (but non-motorized boats aren't). Twist along tidal sloughs recreated from historic photographs.