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Haskell’s Beach (SB)

This site in western Goleta provides easy access to geological formations, beach activities, marine life, and marine fossils. Here the Monterey geological formation is clearly evident and provides opportunities to discuss oil production while viewing the offshore oil platform Holly. Foraminifera, microscopic animals, were abundant in the Monterey shales creating the fossil fuels we use today. Fault lines, beautiful bedrock along with sea cut mesas are among the geological features readily available here. Migratory birds make an appearance along the shore and in the offshore kelp forest, which also affords material for art projects and learning about marine life. The watershed that ends at this beach demonstrates erosion process and sedimentation along with the cliffs and the cut banks as examples of the entire rock cycle. The limited catchment above the beach is interesting to contrast with the lengthier Santa Ynez Valley. Our field trips to Haskell’s Beach are often coupled with time at Ellwood Butterfly Reserve, where we study the migratory patterns of the monarch butterfly. Also available at these sites are the contrasting exotic plants and native plants including eucalyptus, coyote bush, willow, mule fat and annual forbes.