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Catalina Island Avalon California
This is a storied place. Catalina Island Avalon California, books of fiction and non-fiction include it. Travel material about California nearly always includes it. First of all, for some, it’s a bucket list place. For others, it’s another pin in their map. Finally, for still others, it’s home. As a result, about 4100 people live on the island with about 3700 of them living in Avalon. The island is part of the Channel Islands off the California coast. Here is a (Link)to a tourism web site. The island is 22 miles long and 8 miles wide at the widest point. In summary, the island accounts for 74 square miles.
There are eight Channel Islands. Five of the islands make up Channel Island National Park. Here is a link to the park. First of all, two are owned by the US Navy. All except Catalina are virtually uninhabited. In contrast, the two owned by the Navy have between 200 and 300 people from the Navy and related civilians. However, none are permanent residents. In addition, two islands are listed by the US Census Bureau as having no permanent residents. Finally, three of them have populations of three, two and two. Furthermore, the eight islands are under the jurisdiction of three California counties. Here is a link to a Wikipedia article regarding all of the islands.
Catalina Island is a national treasure. First of all, there are several species of both plants and animals that are native to the island and don’t
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The connection to music here is a song called “26 Miles” released by The Four Preps in 1958. The songwriter saw Catalina Island from a California beach while surfing. Interestingly, Catalina is 26 miles away at that point. The key focus of the song is Romance! Catalina has an “island culture” like many
Avalon is the southernmost city in Los Angeles County. Here is a link to the city’s web site. Avalon incorporated as a city in 1913. Furthermore, it’s the only incorporated city on the island. And the only one on the eight Channel Islands.
In keeping with a theme of connecting music to the blog, “ Southern Cross” by Crosby, Stills
Auto ownership at Catalina Island Avalon California
Vehicle ownership is very strict. There are 17 categories for vehicle ownership. Of these, most are commercial vehicles. For personal vehicles, there are two main categories. First, “
Full-size vehicles are currently limited to 422 vehicles. Most noteworthy, they can’t be over 200 inches in length and 80 inches in width. There is no weight limit. Again, there can be only one vehicle per residence. However, a residence may have both an auto and an
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Interestingly, for a new vehicle permit to be issued, two vehicle permits must be surrendered. As a result, the number of
The Wrigley family bought
The Wrigley family also owned the Chicago Cubs. From 1921 until 1951, the Cubs conducted spring training on the island. Consequently, spring training games occurred here. The games were played in Catalina’s version of Wrigley Field. (In 1952, the Cubs moved their spring training to Arizona and have remained there
Jeep Eco Tour at Catalina Island Avalon California
There are several organizations that do tours of the island. The Driveby Tourist chose the 2 hour Jeep Eco Tour. (Here is a link.) Since it was a Monday in early March, I was the only one on the tour. As a result, had a personal tour! The route went thru the island up to the “Airport in the Sky”.
The tour guide showed points of interest. He told about the various plants and animals on the island. Therefore, I heard about plants native to the island and animals both native and introduced to the island.
Catalina is home to nearly 400 native plants and 200 non-native plants. Here is a link to the Conservancy web site. There are too many plants to list here. Over the years, invasive species inadvertently imported began to take over native plants. The Conservancy is working to remove and control these plants. They are destroying many of the original species. The species under attack include trees.
The Catalina Fox is native and distinct to the Channel Islands. Around the year 2000, they were almost extinct. With a massive effort involving the National Park Service, Nature Conservancy, and the Catalina Island Conservancy, the foxes were saved and are no longer considered endangered. The fox became infected with a form of canine distemper. Testing of all the dogs on the island revealed none of them had the disease. One of the fixes was to eliminate the non-native feral pigs. While this caused concern among environmentalists, the pigs had to go.
The foxes on the other end of
The bison on the island initially came over in 1924 for a backdrop in a movie being filmed. Above all, the bison never appeared in the film. They were all males and males alone don’t have the herd instinct. Eventually, the conservancy imported an equal number of female bison. From there the herd multiplied. When the bison herd became too large, they overgrazed the island. Initially, the excess bison became destined for the slaughterhouse for the meat.
An island woman took up the cause and determined to find another way to reduce
We saw some bison on the tour. As a result, t
Catalina has an airport called the “Airport in the Sky”, presumably because it is on one the highest elevation points on the island. From the 1930s into the 1980s, scheduled air service to Catalina continued from various nearby cities in California, notably Long Beach. The airport now services the US Mail, private and chartered planes, and sightseeing helicopters. Finally, an interesting story; the actor Harrison Ford became banned from flying his own plane to the island because he wouldn’t abide by air traffic control instructions!
A fun day at Catalina Island Avalon California
Great trip to Catalina Island. Walking tour of Avalon. Rented a golf cart and drove the island. Jeep Eco Tour. Lunch and dinner at local restaurants. Ice cream (it was disappointing) at an ice cream shop. From Long Beach on the 9:50 AM boat and left on the 7:30 PM boat. Here are a few more pictures for the island. (Overall, the food was disappointing.)
…and the day comes to an end with the boat ride back to Long Beach….
The Driveby Tourist