Humboldt Bay 7: Manila Dunes

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Traveling west on Highway 255, one enters that narrow stretch of land the separates Humboldt Bay from the Pacific Ocean, sometimes referred to as the north spit:

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Here is the community of Manila, featuring a gamut of modest homes running from the charming to the utterly decrepit. Between Manila and the ocean rises a long stretch of dunes, many covered with various grasses, iceplant, and other small ground covering plants:

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There are regions where the sand is not so thickly covered in vegetation, and where the dunes take on a more dune-like appearance:

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But generally speaking these dunes feature more areas covered by vegetation than bare places, so getting the sort of dune shots like one’s find in the Sahara desert or in certain places in Death Valley or in Great Sand Dunes National Park is not to be expected. Instead we find a landscape of dunes partially covered in vegetation, with the bare spots often tramped all over by dogs and hikers. Watch where you step, or else you might fall prey to one of those little brown souvenirs of some dog’s gastronomic adventures.

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The dunes terminate at the ocean, where one finds a more or less conventional beach. You’re not likely to see many people in bathing suits stretched out on towels or playing in the surf. The climate here is chilly in the winter, windy in the spring, foggy in the summer, and cool in the autumn. And the water is quite chilly and treacherous. The best attraction of the beach is the occasional sunset:

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