Pacific Swell | Southern California environment news and trends

PHOTO: Relaxing on a cliff in the Channel Islands

Monday is upon the Southland, but here’s a place outside of the hustle of a new work week. Capturing a moment where it’s always Sunday, this photo from Claire Fackler, NOAA National Marine Sanctuaries, shows the peace and tranquility found just off Southern California’s coastline. Here we see the Channel Islands National Park laid out in all its glory.

The Channel Islands, an archipelago consisting of eight islands, extends for 160 miles between San Miguel Island and San Clemente Island. Santa Catalina Island has the only permanent towns, with the city of Avalon and town of Two Harbors. The island jurisdictions are divided among three Southern California counties, including Los Angeles County, Santa Barbara County, and Ventura County.

The Channel Islands National Park is made of five islands, including Santa Cruz, Anacapa, Santa Rosa, Santa Barbara, and San Miguel. Their geographic isolation brought about their own independent evolution, much as the Galapagos Islands evolved in the equatorial Pacific. As the National Parks Service shares, “The Channel Islands and their encircling waters are home to over 2,000 plants and animals, of which 145 are found nowhere else in the world.” People have found a home on the archipelago for the past 10,000 years.

Photo by Claire Fackler, NOAA National Marine Sanctuaries

Courtesy of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/Department of Commerce