Mile 271 Report

December 31, 2017
by yakinsea

Cape Lookout
Sunday 12:00 AM
Party cloudy
45° F
Calm/Light from the E
Humans / Pets:
Walking / Running:
I was the sole kayaker and I spotted many people at the top of the cape at its end hiking and whale watching.
Activity Comments:
Unfortunately, I could easily hear the dune buggies from the end of the cape, many miles away.
Notable Wildlife:
6 seals, 1 sea lion, large flock of herring gulls, many cormorants, 1 loon, half dozen ravens, 1 bald eagle, 6 western grebes, 6 small grebes, 10 surf scoters, 2 ancient murrelets, 1 large lion's mane jellyfish, moderate number of sea stars - all healthy, occasional chiton, various colors of organisms coating rocks such as a bright scarlet (soft coral?), pink coatings on cave ceilings with one cave having a striking red coating, a firm spongy yellow patch of what looked like soft coral but perhaps and ivasive tunicate (It felt similar to those that I touched in Drakes Estaro and reported to the NPS which they confirmed).
Dead Birds:
Fish & Invertebrates:
No driftline.
New Development:
Natural Changes:
No significant change noted.

Paddled solo on a beautiful calm day with small surf and a light off-shore breeze.  I paddled around the entire cape and into three or four caves with the notable blow-hole that is in the back of the large sea cave at cape's end spouting on my way south but on the return was exposed enough to actually paddle into!  What a great surprise.  It turned right for around 50 ft, then turned left with a low roof angling down with a lot of rumbling and turbulence signaling the end of the line for me.  The caves on the south side were unusually colorful and beautifully lit.  I generally steer well clear of these due to the abundant birdlife around these, but very few birds this time of year.  The most people that I have ever seen were at the end of the trail high above, probably looking for whales.  I didn't see any on this day.  I landed on the small beach in front of the large shallow cave in Well's Cove, north side of the cape, and picked up some foam floats that are so abundant.  The winter surf has cleaned out the usual debris that at times is quite a pile.  Since it has been so wet lately, small waterfalls were dropping into the ocean in many places.  Some caves had a wispy curtain of water from abave at the entrance.

All and all a very good day with the cape looking good.


Other Mile 271 Reports (8)


January 4, 2023 - jessejones
Today was a marine debris survey with WEBS. Two rangers joined us. It was incredibly stormy. Arrived at beach at 11, left at 1. 
  • Denise Harrington, NOAA fellow holding bucket
  • Looking north from just south of day use picnic area


May 30, 2021 - yakinsea
The pigeon guillemot population here is by far the highest that I have ever seen.Ladder that is at the tip, south side, may have impacted nesting common murres, none nested on the long ledge near the...


September 19, 2020 - yakinsea
The main observation was a ladder that was placed perhaps 100 ft. above the water at a tricky spot for someone to gain access to the southern part of the cape's end, which goes through sensitive bird...


November 5, 2019 - yakinsea
Many gulls, and a few miscillaneous birds, most notably a pair of peregrine falcons (one dive-bombing a smaller one until the small one dropped the bird it had). Others included western grebes,...


September 14, 2018 - yakinsea
This stretch seemed in good shape.  I saw a large mora, aka ocean sunfish, lots of gulls, cormorants, and pelicans, as well as a smattering of various diving birds.  I spotted a lone seal on one side...
June 24, 2018 - yakinsea
The cape looked good, no pollution, or cliff erosion noted.  The wildlife seemed less common than in the past, most notably sea lions, but also no pelicans spotted and fewer cormorants than in the...


October 4, 2017 - yakinsea
This report covers the entire cape, since it can only be done by boat, and the other miles are not currently being covered.What a beautiful day!  What a beautiful area!  Just got back from the last...


May 24, 2007 - yakinsea
The area looks good. I think I spotted a falcon. I noted a couple minor slides/rock collapses.