For our fall photo shoot, we shot in the California wetlands and above the Northern California coast. Although our bags are made in Italy, we chose these locations to demonstrate how crucial the preservation of these environments is to the health of California. Shooting in the Bay Area also allows us to show you some of California’s varied history, from the bunkers defending the San Francisco Bay to the story of the Redwood Shores wetlands.
The Redwood Shores Wetlands: Home for Endangered Species
California’s wetlands (the pictures below are taken in the Redwood Shores area). Marshes and salt ponds comprise the marshes. The wetlands ae also home to hundreds of different species—some endangered such as the California clapper rail and the salt marsh harvest mouse. Pelicans and avocets fish in this area, and the western snowy plover, a critically endangered species, also nests here. Plovers build nests along the coasts. If disturbed by beachgoers, joggers, real estate developments, or unleashed dogs, they will abandon their nests.
|Western Snowy Plover||Ridgway's Rail|
|Redwood Shores Wetlands|
|Redwood Shores, Dusk||Wetlands Snail|
Why Else Are the Wetlands Important?
In the past, the wetlands have been used for cattle farming, salt production, and oyster farming. Yet these areas protect against coastal flooding have higher rates of carbon sequestration and storage than tropical rainforests. Wetlands far more carbon than rainforests by area, an estimated 20 and 30 percent of its global soil carbon1. They also buffer the land from the waterways and filter out chemicals in water that have run off from roads and farms.
|Flora in Wetlands|
The Northern California Coast: Devil’s Slide
Devil’s Slide had a long, varied history. During World War II, a bunker perched at the top of mountains. Soldiers stood on lookout for Japanese ships coming from the sea. If a man in the bunker spotted a ship, he radioed gun and cannon operators in the Marin Headlands and at Fort Funston. Although San Francisco was never attacked during World War II, protection of its harbor was a major concern for the military.
|Bunker Overlooks the Pacific||World War II Bunker with Artistic Flair|
Today, satellites can observe the ocean. Men are no longer needed, but the abandoned bunker still perches precariously atop its mountain precipice.
The edge of the mountains at Devil’s Slide are ragged and treacherous. One slip would send a visitor careening hundreds of feet into the sea. During recent years, California’s Highway 1 was frequently blocked by mud slides, which prompted the state to build the Tom Lantos Tunnel.
To visit the wetlands, please check out Hidden SF. (And please keep your dog on-leash!)
If you're interested in Devil's Slide, have a look at Visiting Devil's Slide Trail.