Tag Archives: san diego pictures

Polar bear at SeaWorld San Diego

A short visit to SeaWorld San Diego

SeaWorld

Some pictures and two flash videos from a recent visit to SeaWorld San Diego.

Polar bearPolar bear at SeaWorld San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Great Blue Heron (a visitor to SeaWorld like me!)Great blue heron at SeaWorld San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Emperor PenguinEmperor penguin at SeaWorld San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Sea TurtleSea turtle at SeaWorld San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Flamingos and Manta thrill rideFlamingos at SeaWorld San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Sea turtleSea turtle at SeaWorld San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Stonefish (can you find one of its eyes?)Stonefish at SeaWorld San Diego

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Turtle Reef without the turtles

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Flamingo lagoon and Manta thrill ride

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Tall ship in San Diego

Make a splash on the SEAL!

Out & About

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Sometimes, in order to see the best of San Diego, you have to leave the driving to someone else.

The first time I remember hearing about driving was when our family was driving home to Brigham City, Utah, from Salt Lake City one snowy, dark, winter night. Dad was tired and mom offered to drive. After pulling over and switching seats, mom proceeded to take us on down the highway. I don’t remember how long it was, but mom was driving when we skidded on some ice and spun around, coming to a stop at the edge of the road, which happened to be a cliff with a long drop-off to the canyon below. Fortunately, the guardrail, while damaged, did its job. Dad said something about how things go bad when you leave the driving to someone else. He might have said something about women drivers, but I’m not going there……………….

I’m here to tell you, though, that you should make a Splash on the SEAL and leave the driving to someone else.

Make a Splash on the Seal

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

SEAL tours are unique in that they start on land, either at Seaport Village or the Star of India, drive around to Shelter Island and then into the water. Going into the water is a unique experience itself; it just doesn’t seem right. They will motor around San Diego Bay for a while and take you out to see Mother and Father Nature’s seals and the submarine base before driving up and out of the ocean and back to your starting point.

Make a Splash on the Seal

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

The whole narrated trip takes about 90 minutes and costs only $36 for adults, $19 for children age 4-12, and free for children under age 4.

seaport village (1)-500If you buy your tickets online, there is a discount.

Reservations are required but you cannot make reservations online. You’ll have to go to Seaport Village or the Star of India to make your reservations. The Star of India stop is seasonal — “seasonal” usually means during tourist season, about Memorial Day through Labor Day — so I’d recommend making Seaport Village your point of origination. Besides, if your ride is more than 30 minutes in the future, there is megastuff to do at Seaport Village and Marina Park.

A walk around Marina Park or through Seaport Village provides you with beautiful views of the Bay, the Coronado Bridge, Coronado, and downtown San Diego, as well as shopping and dining.

Some of what I saw when I made a Splash on the SEAL:

Marina Park at Seaport Vilage

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Most of the kites are demonstration kites from the coolest kite store ever, located at Seaport Village just steps away from the flying kites. Except when the kite store is closed, there are always kites flying to keep the children (and your inner child) entertained.

Balanced rocks at Seaport Village in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Marriott towers and Harbor Club towers

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Into the water we go!

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Pelicans on the SEAL tour in San Diego

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Seals and sea lions from the SEAL tour in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Seals and sea lions seen on the SEAL tour

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

San Diego County has the free world’s largest concentration of military personnel, so it’s highly likely that you’ll see military helicopters, planes, and ships when you make a Splash on the SEAL. By the way, SEAL stands for “SE And Land” tour.

Navy ship in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Helicopter shower

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USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70)

USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70)

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Submarine and tugboat

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I got that submarine picture with my 300 mm lens; the tours are only allowed to get within a certain distance of military vessels.

Atessa IV mega-yacht in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Tall ship in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Looking for real estate services in San Diego County?
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Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Submarine and tugboat

San Diego and North Island Naval Air Station from Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery

Out & About

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

If you have to stay on the ground while trying to get good views of San Diego, the best views are on the Point Loma peninsula.

Point Loma map

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Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

The peninsula closes at 5:00 p.m. because most of the peninsula is made up of several military bases: Naval Base Point Loma, Naval Base San Diego, Military Sealift Command, NSC San Diego, and US Space and Naval Warfare Systems. Because of that, there are few stopping places along the peninsula.

At the tip of the peninsula is Cabrillo National Monument, offering by far the best views on a clear day. However, it costs money to get into the Monument. Not much, something like $5 per car. Nonetheless, money is money.

The best place to stop that doesn’t cost money is Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery. Keep in mind that it is on the peninsula so you won’t be able to get to it after 5:00 p.m., even during the summer months when daylight goes until 9:00 p.m.

I had heard today that they have about ten inches of snow out in the mountains but the report didn’t say how far down the snow came. If it gets down to about 2,500 feet, you can go to Point Loma and get pictures of San Diego that look like this, taken in January 2010.

San Diego and snow in the mountains

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I zipped out to Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery this afternoon to see if I could get some snow pictures. Nope. Apparently the snow level is up at the 5,000-foot mark or higher, which we can’t see here in San Diego, usually due to clouds. However, I did get three great pictures since it’s so clear today.

This first picture shows Shelter Island in the center, a peninsula notwithstanding its name. Shelter Island was the home to the America’s Cup back in 1988, 1992, and 1995.

Shelter Island and submarine base

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

At the bottom of that picture is the submarine base, part of Naval Base San Diego. It’s not unusual to see submarines docked at the base, or heading in or out with assistance from Coast Guard tug boats, like this submarine and tugboat that I captured two summers ago:

Submarine and tugboat

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

In the following picture, the big base taking up the bottom half is North Island (also not an island) Naval Air Station. This is where Air Force One lands when the President visits San Diego.

North Island Naval Station

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

This final picture is of downtown San Diego behind some more of North Island Naval Air Station.

San Diego from Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Looking for real estate services in San Diego County?
I can highly recommend
James Frimmer, Realtor
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If you’re looking for a home inspector,
I recommend Russel Ray — that’s me!Real Estate Solutions

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

San Diego's Mission Bay Park from the air

My mission, and I choose to accept it

Out & About

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

A picture from the air of San Diego’s Mission Bay Park:

San Diego's Mission Bay Park from the air

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Consisting of 4,235 acres, Mission Bay Park is the largest aquatic park in the nation as well as the ninth largest city-owned park.

Mission Bay Park is where I spent my very first night in San Diego on May 18, 1992. I fell in love with San Diego and moved here permanently on April 27, 1993. Throughout the ensuing years, I thought I had walked every square inch of land in Mission Bay Park. However….

I took that picture on May 26, 2012, when Jim and I took a 20-minute flight over San Diego for our 18th anniversary. Today I noticed something odd in that picture. Smack dab (smack dab?) in the center of that picture is what looks like a gigantic swimming pool. I have no idea what that is. I have never noticed it before except in this picture, and even then it took nine months for me to notice it.

My mission, and I choose to accept it, is to go find that gigantic swimming pool. I actually suspect that it’s a big pond, but I’ll know more within a couple of days.

Meanwhile, you, too, can fly over San Diego even if, like me, you don’t have your own airplane, helicopter, or hot air balloon. Simply call San Diego Sky Tours!

San Diego Sky Tours

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

San Diego Sky Tours offers several tours of 20-, 30-, or 60 minutes — Downtown Fly-Around, SoCal Classic, North County Medley, San Diego Flyover, and Sunset Escape. If one of those doesn’t fit your style, you can always create your own sky tour. Simply tell them where you want to go and, excepting any FAA restrictions, they can take you there!

Each sky tour plane has window seats for everyone. You also get headphones so you can ask questions of the pilot and listen to communications with flight controllers. A special experience over a special county!

If you live in San Diego and have never seen this beautiful county from the air, now’s the time for a San Diego Sky Tour. If you’re coming to San Diego for Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, Tax Day, Spring Break, or vacation, skip all the ground traffic and see San Diego from the sky!

Call 619-757-6419 today to make your reservation! Ask for Ryan and tell him that you found out about San Diego Sky Tours from Russel Ray’s blog. If he gets enough reservations from my blog, maybe he’ll give me a free sky tour (yes, I do beg at times).

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Looking for real estate services in San Diego County?
I can highly recommend
James Frimmer, Realtor
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If you’re looking for a home inspector,
I recommend Russel Ray — that’s me!Real Estate Solutions

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Picture of the Moment

Symmetry

Picture of the Moment

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

The cat show on Sunday was at the Del Mar Fairgrounds. Usually when I go to the Fairgrounds there are another 50,000 or so people there, making pictures of the Fairgrounds itself somewhat difficult, unless you enjoy pictures of crowd mobs. However, Sunday was a dreary day, dull gray clouds with intermittent rain, resulting in smaller crowds at the cat show and the home show in one of the other pavillions. That allowed me to take time to get some pictures that I’ve always wanted to get, such as these two which I combined into one and titled Symmetry:

Del Mar Fairgrounds in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Looking for real estate services in San Diego County?
I can highly recommend
James Frimmer, Realtor
Century 21 Award, DRE #01458572

If you’re looking for a home inspector,
I recommend Russel Ray — that’s me!Real Estate Solutions

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Out & About

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Liberty Station in San Diego used to be a military recruiting and training center. When many military facilities were closed in the mid-1990s due to budget cuts, Liberty Station was one of them. Fortunately, San Diego recognized the tremendous history that existed at Liberty Station and saved a majority of it, renovating that which could be saved and used, and building a multiple use area out of the rest, including residences, stores, restaurants, and parks.

Liberty Station map

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Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

One of the structures that was saved is the historic North Chapel (Building 208).

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel was completed in 1942 and features leaded stained glass windows representing the 41 different training schools on site, and one window, directly above, representing the recruit.

The windows are designed to tell stories of the Old Testament and the New Testament. Some windows have an emblem of Moses’ Ten Commandants placed at the top of the window. These scenes are from the Old Testament. Other windows have a cross on the top and depict scenes from the New Testament. Each window has been carefully designed to match a story from the Bible to a job that an enlisted Navy sailor would assume on a ship. Here are the other windows:

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Of course, recruits at the Naval Training Center practiced many different religions, so different services were held at North Chapel, conducted appropriately by priests, rabbis, and ministers. The chapel also hosted many weddings for senior officers.

When the Naval Training Center was decommissioned in 1997, North Chapel, a Spanish Colonial Revival-style architecture, evolved into a special event venue and underwent a restoration in 2007. Restoration brought fresh white stucco paint to the exterior and re-roofing of the red tile building, as well as replacing and upgrading the electrical, plumbing, and heating systems. The historical light fixtures were preserved, and the wooden, hand-carved pews and pulpit were refurbished. The outdoor music system that provides bell rings for the chapel was also replaced, and the sanctuary’s original Roger’s pipe organ was modernized.

The stained glass windows by well-known artist Fred Wieland were restored and cleaned. Fred Wieland was a native of Germany, studied in New York City at the Art Student League, and was a member of the San Diego Museum of Art Artists Guild. Mr. Wieland arrived in San Diego in 1930 and is well known locally for designing and creating the stained glass windows of St. Joseph Roman Catholic Cathedral, St. Didacus Church, and the Veterans Museum and Memorial Center (the sister chapel to the North Chapel). Another church where Fred Wieland’s stained glass work may be found is located at Polk Avenue and Park Boulevard, the former Park Boulevard Methodist Episcopal Church.

Now privately owned, North Chapel is open to the public for rent and offers the flexibility of uses not available in similar settings, such as weddings, funerals, concerts, and plays. North Chapel is also open
for viewing on the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month from
11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

North Chapel at Liberty Station in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Looking for real estate services in San Diego County?
I can highly recommend
James Frimmer, Realtor
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Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Action on the San Diego waterfront viewed from Coronado

Action on the Waterfront

Out & About

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

If you come to San Diego and want some great pictures of the San Diego skyline, the place to go is Centennial Park across the San Diego Bay in Coronado:

Coronado map

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Action on the San Diego waterfront viewed from Coronado

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Action on the San Diego waterfront viewed from Coronado

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Action on the San Diego waterfront viewed from Coronado

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Action on the San Diego waterfront viewed from Coronado

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Action on the San Diego waterfront viewed from Coronado

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Action on the San Diego waterfront viewed from Coronado

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Looking for real estate services in San Diego County?
I can highly recommend
James Frimmer, Realtor
Century 21 Award, DRE #01458572

If you’re looking for a home inspector,
I recommend Russel Ray — that’s me!Real Estate Solutions

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Christmas in Coronado

Picture of the Moment

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Jim and I don’t celebrate Christmas per sé, but on Christmas Eve we drive around ooohing and aaahing at the lights, and on Christmas Day we go to the Zoo, Safari Park, or SeaWorld.

We just got home from driving around, which always includes a drive over the bridge to Coronado where they put lights on all the tall evergreen trees in the median of Orange Avenue. Gotta go see it if you’re ever in town during the holidays.

The best lighted house we saw in Coronado this year was this one:

Merry Christmas from Coronado

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I had to take three pictures and have Photoshop merge them for me. Sure wish WordPress would bring back the ability to click on an image and get a larger version.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

Looking for real estate services in San Diego County?
I can highly recommend
James Frimmer, Realtor
Century 21 Award, DRE #01458572

If you’re looking for a home inspector,
I recommend Russel Ray — that’s me!Real Estate Solutions

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

A visit to La Jolla, California

Out & About

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

If you come to visit San Diego, be sure to put a visit to La Jolla on your list of things to do. La Jolla is about 25 miles north of downtown San Diego:

la jolla map

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poinsettia framed

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P.S. If you fly into San Diego, sit on the left side of the airplane. The view of downtown San Diego as you are landing is magnificent.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

Looking for real estate services in San Diego County?
I can highly recommend
James Frimmer, Realtor
Century 21 Award, DRE #01458572

If you’re looking for a home inspector,
I recommend Russel Ray — that’s me!Real Estate Solutions

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Play. Imagine. Create.

Out & About

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Balboa Park is a great place for a photographer to hang out because there are always interesting things going on.

Balboa Park map

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Yesterday I found this guy practicing:

Practice makes perfect

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I don’t normally walk past the children’s playground because there are billions and billions of rugrats runnin’ loose.

I’m glad I did yesterday because I got a couple of nice pictures with not a rugrat in sight!

A fish out of water

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Evos landscape structure in Balboa Park, San Diego, California

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

When I was a rugrat, the parks in my city had teeter totters, merry-go-rounds, swings, monkey bars, and chin-up bars. That playground equipment in the picture actually has a trademarked name: Evos.

Evos landscape structure in Balboa Park in San Diego, California

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

Looking for real estate services in San Diego County?
I can highly recommend
James Frimmer, Realtor
Century 21 Award, DRE #01458572

If you’re looking for a home inspector,
I recommend Russel Ray — that’s me!Real Estate Solutions

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos