Coastal California

Coastal California, also known as the California Coastline and the Golden Coast, refers to the coastal regions of the U.S. state of California. The term is not primarily geographical as it also describes an area distinguished by cultural, economic and political attributes.

Coastal California Map
Counties commonly seen as constituting coastal California.


Three Arch Bay Photo Taken by pilot D Ramey Logan
Three Arch Bay Laguna Beach Southern California

The area includes the North Coast, San Francisco Bay Area (including Silicon Valley), Central Coast, and South Coast. During the 2000 Census, roughly a third of households had incomes exceeding $75,000, compared to 17.6% in the Central Valley[1] and 22.5% at the national average.[2]

The region is known for being home to artisan communities such as Laguna Beach and Carmel as well as the natural environment of the Redwood Forests of the North Coast. While the area has always been relatively expensive, when compared to inland regions and the national average, the recent real estate boom has left it as the most expensive housing market in the nation. An October 2004 CNN Money publication found that a 2,200-square-foot (200 m2) home in a "middle management neighborhood" would cost an average of $1.8 million.[3]


Monterey Bay Seascape
Monterey Bay shoreline, Pacific Grove, Monterey County
Surfers south of Gaviota, California
Beach south of Gaviota, California

The counties commonly seen as constituting coastal California are:

See also


  1. ^ "Stanford University, income in California" (PDF). Retrieved 2007-05-28.
  2. ^ "US Census Bureau, US household income". Retrieved 2007-05-28.
  3. ^ "CNN Money, housing markets". Retrieved 2007-05-28.

External links


Bauhinia is a genus of more than 500 species of flowering plants in the subfamily Cercidoideae and tribe Bauhinieae, in the large flowering plant family Fabaceae, with a pantropical distribution. The genus was named after the Bauhin brothers Gaspard and Johann, Swiss-French botanists.

Many species are widely planted in the tropics as orchid trees, particularly in India, Sri Lanka, Vietnam and southeastern China. Other common names include mountain ebony and kachnar (India and Pakistan). Before the family was reorganised, a number of genera including the lianas Lasiobema and Phanera were placed here (see related genera).

In the United States, the trees grow in Hawaii, coastal California, Texas, Louisiana, and Florida. Bauhinia ×blakeana is the floral emblem of Hong Kong—a stylized orchid tree flower appears on the flag of Hong Kong and Hong Kong Airlines uses 'Bauhinia' as its radio callsign in air traffic communication.


BosWash is a name coined by futurist Herman Kahn in a 1967 essay describing a theoretical United States megalopolis extending from the metropolitan area of Boston to that of Washington, D.C. The publication coined terms like BosWash, referring to predicted accretions of the Northeast, and SanSan (San Francisco to San Diego) for the urbanized region in Coastal California. The general concept for the area described by BosWash was first identified in French geographer Jean Gottmann's 1961 book Megalopolis: The Urbanized Northeastern Seaboard of the United States, although the term BosWash did not appear in the work.BosNYWash is a variant term that specifically references New York City, which is a central hub and has long been by-far the largest metropolis in the region and the country. In 1971, The Bosnywash Megalopolis was published.

California Coast Ranges

The Coast Ranges of California span 400 miles (640 km) from Del Norte or Humboldt County, California, south to Santa Barbara County. The other three coastal California mountain ranges are the Transverse Ranges, Peninsular Ranges and the Klamath Mountains.Physiographically, they are a section of the larger Pacific Border province, which in turn are part of the larger Pacific Mountain System physiographic division. UNESCO has included the "California Coast Ranges Biosphere Reserve" in its Man and the Biosphere Programme of World Network of Biosphere Reserves since 1983.

California English

California English (or Californian English) collectively refers to American English in California, particularly an emerging variety, mostly associated with youthful white speakers of urban and coastal California. California is home to a highly diverse population and an emergent vowel shift only first noted by linguists in the 1980s, most heavily researched in Southern California and the San Francisco Bay Area of Northern California. Since that time, unique California speech has been mostly associated in American popular culture with adolescent and young-adult speakers of coastal California; the possibility that it is, in fact, an age-specific variety of English is one hypothesis. Other documented California English includes a "country" accent associated with rural and inland white Californians as well as unique California varieties of Chicano English associated with Mexican Americans. Research has shown there to be a linguistic boundary perceived by Californians themselves between Northern and Southern California.

California gnatcatcher

The California gnatcatcher (Polioptila californica) is a small 10.8 cm (4.3 in) long insectivorous bird which frequents dense coastal sage scrub growth. This species was recently split from the similar black-tailed gnatcatcher of the Sonoran and Chihuahuan deserts. This bird is often solitary, but joins with other birds in winter flocks.

California oak woodland

California oak woodland is a plant community found throughout the California chaparral and woodlands ecoregion of California in the United States and northwestern Baja California in Mexico. Oak woodland is widespread at lower elevations in coastal California; in interior valleys of the Coast Ranges, Transverse Ranges and Peninsular Ranges; and in a ring around the California Central Valley grasslands. The dominant trees are oaks, interspersed with other broadleaf and coniferous trees, with an understory of grasses, herbs, geophytes, and California native plants.

Oak savannas occur where the oaks are more widely spaced due a combination of lack of available moisture, and low-intensity frequent fires.

The oak woodlands of Southern California and coastal Northern California are dominated by coast live oak (Quercus agrifolia), but also include valley oak (Q. lobata), California black oak (Q. kelloggii), canyon live oak (Q. chrysolepis), and other California oaks. The foothill oak woodlands around the Central Valley are dominated by blue oak (Q. douglasii) and gray pine (Pinus sabiniana).


Chendytes lawi, commonly called the Law's diving-goose, was a goose-sized flightless sea duck, once common on the California coast, California Channel Islands, and possibly southern Oregon. It lived in the Pleistocene and survived into the Holocene. It appears to have gone extinct at about 450–250 BCE. The youngest direct radiocarbon date from a Chendytes bone fragment dates to 770–400 BCE and was found in an archeological site in Ventura County. Its remains have been found in fossil deposits and in early coastal archeological sites. Archeological data from coastal California show a record of human exploitation of Chendytes lawi for at least 8,000 years. It was probably driven to extinction by hunting, animal predation, and loss of habitat. There is nothing in the North American archaeological record indicating a span of exploitation for any megafaunal genus remotely as long as that of Chendytes.Although originally thought to be sea-diving duck in the tribe Mergini, analysis of ancient DNA sequences suggests that it is a basal member and a sister to the clade of extant dabbling ducks in the tribe Anatini.

China Lake, Kern County, California

China Lake is an unincorporated community in Kern County, California. It is located 2.5 miles (4 km) north-northeast of Ridgecrest, at an elevation of 2264 feet (690 m). The place is on China Lake, a dry lake on the Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake.The first post office at China Lake opened in 1948.

Closed-cone pine forest

Closed-cone pine forest is a plant community of coastal California and several offshore islands. The plant community is often mono-dominant and single-aged, but dense with ladders. Closed Cone forests grow in low nutrient and/or stressed soils, which can lead to slow growth. It consists of stands of bishop pines, Monterey pines, and others which rely on fire and shoot death to open their cones and release the seeds.

Coastal sage scrub

Coastal sage scrub, also known as coastal scrub, CSS, or soft chaparral, is a low scrubland plant community of the California coastal sage and chaparral subecoregion, found in coastal California and northwestern coastal Baja California. It is within the California chaparral and woodlands ecoregion, of the Mediterranean forests, woodlands, and scrub biome.

Ducks Unlimited

Ducks Unlimited (DU) is an American nonprofit organization 501(c) dedicated to the conservation of wetlands and associated upland habitats for waterfowl, other wildlife, and people. It has had a membership of around 700,000 since January 2013.

Fauna of California

The fauna of the State of California may be the most diverse in the United States of America. Of the Lower 48 conterminous states, California has the greatest diversity in climate, terrain and geology in general. The state's six life zones are the lower Sonoran (desert); upper Sonoran (foothill regions and some coastal lands); transition (coastal areas and moist northeastern counties); and the Canadian, Hudsonian, and Arctic zones, comprising California's highest elevations. California’s diverse geography gives rise to dozens of different ecosystems, each of which has its own unique native plants and animals. California is a huge state, the 3rd largest in the U.S., and can range broadly in habitat type.Earth scientists typically divide California into eleven distinct geomorphic provinces with clearly defined boundaries. They are, from north to south, the Klamath Mountains, the Cascade Range, the Modoc Plateau, the Basin and Range, the Coast Ranges, the Central Valley, the Sierra Nevada, the Transverse Ranges, the Mojave Desert, the Peninsular Ranges, and the Colorado Desert. Here, the Los Angeles Basin, the Channel Islands, and the Pacific Ocean are treated as distinct regions.

Common animals that live throughout all the state include raccoons, weasels, otters, beavers, hawks, lizards, owls, coyotes, skunks, snakes, cougars, black bears, deers, squirrels and whales. As of 2013, there are 634 bird species on the California Birds Records Committee, ten of which are introduced species which are not native to the state. The California quail, the official state bird, has a breeding habit of mainly shrubby areas and open woodland. Another bird which winters in California is the American white pelican which is a large seabird, with a wingspan reaching up to 110 inches (280 cm).

Venomous spiders in California include Arizona recluse, baja recluse, chilean recluse, desert recluse, martha's recluse, russell's recluse, brown widow and western black widow.

Horatio West Court

Horatio West Court, built in Santa Monica, California in 1919, is an early example of attached houses with shared pedestrian and vehicle access. The six little buildings are grouped on a 60-foot lot. It was designed by Irving Gill.

Horatio West Court divides its narrow lot symmetrically, placing two units on either side of a driveway that runs the length of the lot to a rear parking area, where two garages are topped with little apartments. Each building is a slightly inflected, flat-roofed two-story cube to which a small entrance porch and a walled terrace has been added. The arched entry ways and small patio courts reflect Gill's affinity for the Mission Revival style. However, the buildings themselves fall squarely into the Modern Movement.

Richard Neutra extensively photographed the Horatio West Court as well as Gill's Dodge House and published in his book Amerika: Neues Bauen in der Welt (1930). In Leland Roth's American Architecture: A History, the Horatio West Court is described as "Gill's flat-roof crisply-rectilinear apartment complex." [1] In Coastal California, John A. Vlahides and Tullan Spitz describe the complex as "one of the best examples of Irving Gill's revolutionary modernism." [2]

The Horatio West Court was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1977, the first building in the City of Santa Monica to be listed in the National Register.

Left Coast

Left Coast is a political expression that implies that the West Coast of the United States leans politically to the left or the expression can refer to states that lean politically left. The implication is that the states of California, Oregon, and Washington tend to vote for the Democratic Party, particularly in Coastal California, the Eugene and Portland metropolitan areas in Oregon, and the Puget Sound region in Washington. Also, it means that the people who live in the West Coast region except Alaska have a generally more liberal or progressive attitude than the rest of the country. The phrase plays on the fact that the West coast of the U.S. is on the left of the contiguous 48 states when viewing a map with north oriented at the top.

In the United States, the expression is used pejoratively by right-leaning people, but proudly by people on the left. Conservative columnist James Hirsen writes the "Left Coast Report", which puts down Hollywood celebrities and their scandals as well as providing conservative political commentary. He has also written a book, Tales from the Left Coast: True Stories of Hollywood Stars and Their Outrageous Politics. On the other side, the term is used by cartoonist Ted Rall as the name of his left-leaning political comic strip. Writer, voiceover actor, and gay rights activist Ben Patrick Johnson calls his video blog Life on the Left Coast. Fundraiser and CEO of San Francisco-based nonprofit Tides, Drummond Pike, maintains a CEO blog entitled Notes from the Left Coast.

Lonicera involucrata

Lonicera involucrata, the bearberry honeysuckle, bracted honeysuckle, twinberry honeysuckle, Californian Honeysuckle, twin-berry, or black twinberry, is a species of honeysuckle native to northern and western North America, from southern Alaska east across boreal Canada to Quebec, and south through the western United States to California, and to Chihuahua in northwestern Mexico. It grows at elevations from sea level to 2,900 m.It is a large shrub that can grow 0.5–5 m high, with shoots with a quadrangular cross-section. The leaves are elliptic, to oval-shaped, 3–16 cm long and 2–8 cm broad; they are hairy along the margins and on the underside, and have a distinctive abruptly acuminate tip. The flowers are yellow, tubular, hairy, 1–2 cm long, and are monoecious; they are produced in pairs subtended by a pair of reddish basal bracts 2–4 cm across. The fruit is a 6–12 mm diameter black berry containing several small seeds;There are two varieties:

Lonicera involucrata var. involucrata. Most of the species' range, except as below; in California only in the Sierra Nevada. Leaves thin; flowers yellow.

Lonicera involucrata var. ledebourii (Eschsch.) Jeps. Coastal California and southern Oregon. Leaves thick, leathery; flowers tinged orange to red outside.

Malpaso Creek

Malpaso Creek is a small, coastal stream 5 miles (8.0 km) south of Carmel in Monterey County, California, United States. It is generally regarded as the northern border of Big Sur in central coastal California.

Marine layer

A marine layer is an air mass which develops over the surface of a large body of water such as the ocean or large lake in the presence of a temperature inversion. The inversion itself is usually initiated by the cooling effect of the water on the surface layer of an otherwise warm air mass. As it cools, the surface air becomes denser than the warmer air above it, and thus becomes trapped below it. The layer may thicken through turbulence generated within the developing marine layer itself. It may also thicken if the warmer air above it is lifted by an approaching area of low pressure. The layer will also gradually increase its humidity by evaporation of the ocean or lake surface, as well as by the effect of cooling itself. Fog will form within a marine layer where the humidity is high enough and cooling sufficient to produce condensation. Stratus and stratocumulus will also form at the top of a marine layer in the presence of the same conditions there.

In the case of coastal California, the offshore marine layer is typically propelled inland by a pressure gradient which develops as a result of intense heating inland, blanketing coastal communities in cooler air which, if saturated, also contains fog. The fog lingers until the heat of the sun becomes strong enough to evaporate it, often lasting into the afternoon during the "June gloom" period. An approaching frontal system or trough can also drive the marine layer onshore.

A marine layer will disperse and break up in the presence of instability, such as may be caused by the passage of a frontal system or trough, or any upper air turbulence that reaches the surface. A marine layer can also be driven away by sufficiently strong winds.

It is not unusual to hear media weather reporters discuss the marine layer as if it were synonymous with the fog or stratus it may contain, but this is erroneous. In fact, a marine layer can exist with virtually no cloudiness of any kind, although it usually does contain some. The marine layer is a medium within which clouds may form under the right conditions; it is not the layers of clouds themselves.

Tetracis mosesiani

Tetracis mosesiani is a moth of the family Geometridae. It is found coastal California from near sea level to 915 meters.

The length of the forewings 17–23 mm. Adults are on wing from October to early December.

Larvae feed on Lonicera hispidula.

Triunfo Pass

The Triunfo Pass is a mountain pass in the Santa Monica Mountains, located on Yerba Buena Road in southeastern Ventura County, Southern California.Automobile access to Circle X Ranch Park, part of the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, is on west side of the pass.

Metro regions
Most populous

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