Clinging to a Clifftop in Trinidad, California
From an isolated stretch of the coast north of Trinidad, California, the mussel-peppered granite of Patrick's Point projects into the Pacific Ocean. Made raw by perpetual blasts of cold wind, the point is covered in a forest of mushroom-decked pine and spruce stands. Some lay in disarray, their trunks shredded by winter storms. Hike the edge of the park along the eroding Rim Trail and scan the horizon for the tell-tale spout of a migrating whale from the peak of Wedding Rock, a hundred feet above crashing waves. Climb wet cliffs and sea-stacks for commanding views of the sea, on the rare occasion that the fog lifts. Yurok dancers perform a traditional Brush Dance in Sumeg Village nearby. An abundant supply of translucent stones are waiting to be sifted through at Agate Beach, beneath a great sandstone bluff at the north end of the headland. From here, surfers paddle a quarter-mile through rocks and fierce surf to the point break, where the winter storms toppling the trees above sometimes bring forty-foot waves.