San Pablo Bay, to the north of San Francisco Bay, is wide and shallow, save for the shipping channel carving an arc between the San Pablo and Carquinez Straits.
The bay, being mostly shallow is quick to respond to changes in weather, with wind and current stacking up steep choppy waves in minutes. A week or two of hot, still weather warms the water in the shallows and the changes in the marine life are remarkable. With algal blooms come fish migrations, waterfowl and marine mammals follow.
It’s now early October and schools of baitfish fill Point San Pablo Harbor. They are pursued by fat jack smelt hunting them from below. The striped bass are in on the action and you can hear them smacking the water as they gobble up anchovies and smelt alike.
A harbor seal has arrived at the marina. It’s made daily appearances with the high tide, undoubtedly following the procession of life as we enjoy the last warm days of Autumn.