June 1, 2012 – We drove Hwy 101 north from Sunset Bay SP,Oregon, to to Cape Lookout SP, Oregon. Along the way, we stopped at the Sea Lions Cave, a '”must see” listing in the guidebook we were using. Though it was a privately owned operation, this viewing area allowed a really close look at the Stellar Sea Lions which use this shore and sea cave for their rookery.
Here is a male sea lion with a female and several pups.
A dominate male will take the choicest rocks to hang out on with his ‘harem’ of 10-20 females. We had taken an elevator down to the level of this sea cave, and were watching these sea lions through a wire fence. You could hear the constant ‘roaring’ of the sea lions as they talked with one another.
This is a close up of the little island in the middle of this cave. Each time a wave washed over, it looked like the sea lions would just be swept right off…..but they managed to hold on.
This big old guy with whiskers was obviously the most dominate male…..Doesn’t he look satisfied with himself?
I am sure that the ships really appreciated this, especially in the fog and mist like we had today. You could barely see past the lighthouse structure.
We were able to walk up into this lighthouse……up and up those spiral stairs……When we got to the top, you could stick your head up into the big lens. Neat, but impossibly close to get a picture……
We looked out on the rocks just past the lighthouse and noticed all these birds!
They are Common Murres. They look a bit like a penguin, but these birds fly.
We were fascinated by the sheer number of birds…….thousands……as many as 25,000 murres breed on Colony Rock, more than any other place in North America.