There is something intuitive to a young boy when it comes to treasure. You are constantly looking for it. It is either a perfect stick, a great shinny rock, or a lego piece that is unique and valuable. It translates well into pirate stories where the treasure is often buried on some deserted island filled with jewels and gold coins. Maybe this is where our hunting began? Spending countless hours with my son exploring beaches, walking over sand that was full of possible trunks of hidden treasures.
Who can even remember.
But my son and I have become obsessed with a certain treasure that is found on the beaches of California. Sea Glass.
It started with a small and jagged piece that if I found today, I most likely would throw it right back in the water. It was a green piece of glass, that stood out amongst the shells on the water line. But it was treasured. We discovered that at low tides at certain beaches we could find three or four pieces at a time. That was the day it became a hobby. It is an amazing hobby at that too. It is undeniably relaxing and therapeutic, and the best part is, it is free.
Sea Glass is fascinating as well. We have learned that the cobalt blue dates back to old medicine bottles, red is often from tail lights when they were made of glass, and thick brown or amber pieces may be from old whiskey bottles. All of the glass ended up in the sea through storm drains or dumps, and has been tumbled through the rocks for many many years.
Of course you will mostly find green and brown or white from beer bottles, but the more you look, the more rare the pieces you may find.
So you might be asking where are the best places in Orange county to go hunting for this? Or maybe not. I will go ahead and reveal some spots that I have found these treasures.
1. Huntington Beach Pier (low tide)- I found this place on accident, going for a morning walk at super low tide one morning before anyone had the chance to get down there. Look amongst small pebble piles or tide lines, and go slow. I have walked behind seasoned hunters who have missed pieces.
2. Laguna Beach(various tides) honestly, after huge tidal surges, added with a storm or two off the coast, much is often stirred up in Laguna. Any cove can offer a great opportunity to hunt. But I warn you, you may expect a day to be great, and find nothing, while other times you go for a simple walk, and come away with handfuls of glass and treasures. NOTE: Most beaches in Laguna are protected. This means look at all the beautiful sea life, but don’t pick up or take anything except this sea glass.
Below is a pile of treasures found in only two hours. It was a long stretch of beach up in Oxnard, and according to a local, it was completely unusual to find that much. There was a pile of pebbles and rocks that was washed ashore from a storm, and amongst it was milk glass, plates, patterned tiles, red glass, all colors of blue and even the rarest of rares, an orange piece of a decorative plate from the 50′s.
Some people like to keep all their sea glass tips to themselves, but I have come to realize that there is a lot out there, and very few people are really looking for it. I hope a few readers pick up this hobby, and wish you the best of success in your journey. It is guaranteed to bring you hours of joy and peace, and it is a wonderful experience for any child from age 3-93.