View from our balcony at Bodega Bay Lodge, July 31, 1998

Sonoma Coast, July 1998 — After spending one night in our posh lodgings, the Big Guy was eager to get back out and find a fishing spot. We had to head home that afternoon, so there was no time to be lost! He left the room about 7 AM to search for bait (ghost shrimp) at Doran Beach, just down the tiny lane from our hotel.

By 10:00 we checked out of our room and set off up the coast to find a good fishing spot. At the time I wasn’t sure where we finally settled; when I asked the Big Guy, he told me the beach was called Arched Gulch, but even at the time that didn’t sound quite right. Thanks to recognizing the shape of the rocks I can now confirm we were at Marshall Gulch, which is just north of Arched Rock Beach.

The morning started out chilly but quickly warmed up, and I was able to relax on the sand and enjoy the sunshine while the Big Guy was busy surf fishing. We had the beach all to ourselves with the exception of one other fisherman, who had climbed out on a big rock and was out of sight most of the time.

Marshall Gulch
Marshall Gulch

One of my favorite beach activities as a kid was exploring tide pools, so I was pleased to spot a few over to my right; sadly I wasn’t able to do much poking around because the rocks were far too slippery for me. Still, sitting on the beach listening to the roar of the ocean and watching the waves roll in isn’t a bad way to spend an afternoon!


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