There are two options I am aware of to see these interesting seals up close.
First is Año Nuevo State Park and also Piedras Bianca near San Simion.
In order to see the seals in Ano Nuevo you have to book a tour online that, if you want to pick times that suit you, you probably have to book about two weeks in advance. I think the $7 per person plus $10 for parking was well spent. On a 2 ½ hour hike we learned a lot about the seals and came up close to watch the little babies get nursed.
Piedras Bianca has a short, more accessible, walk up to a viewing point where a park ranger answers questions. Here no reservation is necessary but a donation is appreciated.
January/February are probably the most visited months for the state park to see the elephant seals. Breeding season is from late December till early February. In March the adults leave their pubs behind. Yes! Imagine that. The pubs tech themselves to swim and will depart in April to swim up north.
Mature females will be somewhat pregnant after about 24 days after giving birth, they do a delayed implantation which means the fertilized egg will not be implanted in the wall of the uterus for another four month.
Another unbelievable fact is that the females don’t eat anything while they give birth, nurse and breed, and the males go without food for up to three months while they are on land mating.
Do you know of any other places to watch elephant seals in the Bay Area?