Photos: Oso Flaco Lake, Nipomo, CA

Just north of Guadalupe, California, lies one of the most scenic natural areas all along California’s coast, Oso Flaco Lake.  To get there, three miles north of Guadalupe, turn west onto Oso Flaco Lake Road, this road will dead end at the parking area for this hidden State Park.

The lake has been called Oso Flaco, meaning “skinny bear,” ever since 1769 when Gaspar de Portola’s expedition passed through. The reason for this is attributed to a fateful meal shared by the explorers. The group saw, shot and subsequently ate a skinny bear they had seen on the shores of the lake. By the next day, several of the men had died. The tale goes that the native people, the Chumash, had fed the bear tainted meat which when consumed would cause the animals to sicken enough for them to be unable to compete for resources. With the inability to feed came the inevitable wasting that would have led to our ‘skinny bear’. It would appear though that the bear’s flesh had enough residual toxins to have also dispatched our ill fated explorers to a quicker demise.

Above text is from Oso Flaco Lake CA State Park website: CLICK HERE.

All photographs shown below were taken by Anthony V. Toscano.

I enter a new world, and let my old one stay behind.
Enter a new world and leave your old world behind.
A bridge lifts my body, and my spirit rises.
Allow a bridge to lift your body and raise your spirits.
Fresh water promises to wash away the thoughts that plague my mind.
Feel fresh water wash away what plagues your mind.
Tule reeds going green, a promise of coming summer.
Watch tule reeds’ promise of another verdant summer.
Through sand dunes, toward Pacific ocean's endless expanse
Trek through a sandy forest and toward the sea.
A challenge . . . I walk on.
Meet a challenge, to climb or to turn back. Walk on.
Balboa's dream is my reward.
Balboa’s dream is your reward.

 

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