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The Guadalupe Dunes and Point Sal
Near Guadalupe, California

Guadalupe is a small farm town on a little-travelled stretch of Highway 1. Just west are the Guadalupe Dunes, a continuation of the 18-mile stretch of beach and sand dunes that begins at Pismo Beach. Ownership and management is fragmented, with county, state, and federal agencies involved, but all have the same basic mandate to preserve natural features and wildlife.

Mussel Rock Dune, 500 feet (150 meters) high, is the highest dune on the California coast. Cecil B. DeMille built elaborate sets for his epic movie of The Ten Commandments here in 1923, with the Santa Maria River standing in for the Nile. The sets were buried in the sand when filming concluded, but bits and pieces sometimes emerge. Union Oil Company ran a very messy oil field and refinery here for decades, which is now being cleaned up.

Point Sal marks the end of the long beach. It is a dramatic headland and a state park, but unfortunately road access has been cut off.

Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes National Wildlife Refuge
Wikipedia: Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes

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Guadalupe Highway One

Guadalupe Highway One

Highway 1 is the main street of the small agricultural town of Guadalupe

Guadalupe, California

Date photographed: June 11, 2010
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Guadalupe Dunes Center

Guadalupe Dunes Center

The Guadalupe Dunes Center in a classic Craftsman house provides information about all the various units of the dunes complex

Guadalupe, California

Date photographed: June 11, 2010
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Wind and Sand at Guadalupe Beach

Wind and Sand at Guadalupe Beach

Extremely windy conditions at Guagalupe Beach have buried the picnic table in drifting sand

Rancho Guadalupe Dunes County Park, California

Date photographed: June 10, 2010
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Trail to Point Sal Begins Here

Trail to Point Sal Begins Here

The road to Point Sal is closed but a hiking trail over the ridge and down to the beach begins here

Point Sal State Beach, California

Date photographed: June 10, 2010
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