After an afternoon of ice skating, I talked the family into making a quick trip up to Del Cerro Park in Palos Verdes. It takes a while to get there from home, but since we were already up in the hills for the ice rink, it was about five minutes. My original plan was just to walk out there myself, spend five minutes enjoying the view and taking pictures, then head back, but the five-year-old wanted to come along rather than wait in the car with mom.
Of course kids have their own pace, and while he wasn’t terribly interested in looking out at the ocean from a hilltop a few thousand feet up, he was fascinated by a lot of the other things along the way, which was how we ended up getting close to the hilltop at the right time for this view of the sky, sundogs, cirrus clouds, criss-crossing contrails, and silhouetted trees.
To be honest, he wasn’t terribly interested in that view either. At five, checking out foxtails and giant clover and gopher holes and fragments of concrete slabs (in a suspiciously flat and rectangular depression) and looking for the entrance to an incredibly long stairway and climbing and balancing on logs and looking for “the actual park part of the park” (i.e. the playground) are more appealing, and I barely had a chance for this moment to register.
We did eventually make it up to the top of the hill and the viewpoint. The ocean was covered in haze, completely blocking the view of Catalina Island and any chance of watching the patterns made by ocean currents and waves far below. That was fine. It wasn’t the highlight for either of us.
Del Cerro Park, at the top of the Palos Verdes Peninsula, on a super windy evening. I saw two tumbleweeds roll by, and kept worrying I’d drop my phone while taking pictures.
I need to get out here (and other scenic spots) more often. Even though it’s not that far (one of the great things about the LA area is how close it is to sea, mountains, deserts, forests and so on), it’s so easy to get caught up in the day to day grind that you forget to step out and visit what’s right there, on the other side of the traffic and smog.
Photo album on Flickr: Del Cerro Views
Originally posted on Instagram
Flashback to April and Hawaii. On the day we drove to Kilauea we stopped at various places along the way. And since it’s a nearly-100-mile drive from Kailua, there was a lot to see.
We never made it down to South Point (the southernmost tip of the island), partly because of time and partly because—believe it or not—our car rental contract forbid us to drive on the 12-mile road out to the point! Supposedly it’s poorly maintained—or it used to be, and the policy hasn’t kept up—and they don’t want the wear and tear on cars that aren’t designed for it. As I recall, rental trucks and SUVs don’t have the restriction. This was the closest we ever came to it, and you can only barely see it way off in the distance.
If you look at the end of the spray near the visible point, then go straight up toward the horizon, you’ll notice that the sky-sea line dips downward slightly and there’s a faint darker patch of sky. As far as we could tell, that’s the promontory heading out toward South Point. Even then, we weren’t quite sure. Update: It’s not. I checked the map when I finally uploaded these images to Flickr, and the highway doesn’t get close to the ocean on the west side. It’s a viewpoint near Haleokane, east of Naalehu and east of the turnoff to South Point Road. We’d already passed it!