Kayaking Tours

DWimpfheimer-MonoKayaking20102David Wimpfheimer Lighthouse Oct 2017-7

Tomales Bay is a 6,800-acre estuary located just east of Point Reyes National Seashore and one of David’s favorite places to explore. The bay is 12 miles long and relatively shallow, occupying the seaward end of a rift valley created by the San Andreas Fault. Its clean water supports productive eel grass beds, which provide a nursery habitat for many species of fish and invertebrates. The pristine waters of the bay also support harbor seals, shorebirds, and cormorants. Osprey, kingfishers, loons, grebes, pelicans and thousands of ducks.

The following kayaking excursions are sponsored by
Blue Waters Kayaking. Contact them to register.

Kayaking the Wetlands
December 2, 2017
8:30am - 12:30pm

Over 450 species of birds have been recorded in the Point Reyes area, making it one of the best bird watching havens in the country. Fall and winter are great times to view birds from a kayak in Tomales Bay. The mild weather conditions bring in thousands of birds. This tour will focus on the shallow, eastern end of the bay and the restored Giacomini wetlands. This is the largest and most ambitious restoration project at Point Reyes and judging by the thousand of birds that utilize the area, one of the most successful. You will see and learn about migrating birds, marine animals and other species which live below and above the water's surface. This tour is for those who love to watch and identify birds as well as those with a curiosity for what makes Tomales Bay such a unique ecosystem.

Lower Tomales Bay Exploration
January 21, 2018
9:30 am - 2:30 pm

Tomales Bay is one of the most productive and dramatically beautiful estuaries in California. In the winter over 25,000 ducks, loons, grebes and other waterbirds feed in its rich waters. Spring is an excellent time to see these and other species that are migrating along the coast. Marbled godwits, willets and other shorebirds feed while red-throated Loon, horned grebe, brant and scoters linger. Rather than just viewing these birds from the shore, on this special trip we travel by stable, double kayaks to get close views of dozens of cormorants that breed on Hog Island, osprey nesting sites along the bay, and maybe even a chance to see a bald eagle. In addition to the rich birdlife, we often see tule elk, river otter, bat rays and leopard sharks. It is always a treat to paddle around the wild, lower part of the bay starting from Nick’s Cove, exploring the mouth of Walker Creek and continuing along the eastern shoreline of Point Reyes National Seashore. No previous kayaking experience is necessary to join us for this unique way to enjoy the fantastic wildlife of Tomales Bay.

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Drakes Estero Natural History by Kayak
Saturday, February 17, 2018
9:00am - 2:00pm

This 7,847-acre estuary was designated a wilderness area in 2012 and is one of California’s most pristine estuaries. Extremely healthy eelgrass beds provide breeding zones for nudibranchs, barnacles, sponges and countless other invertebrates that form the basis of the complex food web that makes this ecosystem so diverse and exciting. While paddling we will be watching the water for bat rays and leopard sharks. Drakes Estero is one of the largest breeding sites for Harbor Seals in the state. These pinnipeds often stare back at our excited stares with their large black eyes. Of course, a myriad of shorebirds, ducks, grebes and other waterbirds also fest on the rich fare here. Join us on a special excursion in the heart of Point Reyes National Seashore.

The above two tours kayaking tours are sponsored by
Blue Waters Kayaking Contact them for details on registering. See you on the water!

Some of the kayaking trips that David leads are sponsored by
Point Reyes Field Institute. Tomales Bay and Drakes Estero are often the dynamic estuaries that are visited on these tours. Harbor Seals, otters and many, many birds are usually enjoyed at close range on these paddles.

The Natural History of Mono Lake
class, also sponsored by PRFI, includes a half day of kayaking on one of the most dramatic places on the planet. Yes, I’m bias, having spent over a quarter century helping to protect and educate groups about this unique gem in the Eastern Sierra. Join us on July 15 - 17, 2016

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