Above, a tiny person shows the size of this normally offshore, double-humped rock. The ring around its base shows the amplitude of tides.
I know this rock by three names. Camel Rock is by far the best known name. Ask any local person.
Camels are not indigenous to our area, but local Yuroks have an apt animal name, poï ´k, meaning sea bird, according to anthropologist T.T. Waterman (cited below). This name fits beautifully, since the rock is a major sea bird rookery. It teems with sea birds in season, and they wheel around it in great numbers at times - an unforgettable sight.
The USGS calls it Little River Rock. Little River is close by. On U.S. government maps, Google maps, or doing web research, let's say on which sea birds raise their young here, use the official USGS name. Oh, and the USGS uses "Camel Rock", a.k.a. "Camal Rock", a.k.a. "Double Rock" for a separate rock offshore near Baker Beach!
So just ask yourself these three questions: 1) What non-native animal does the rock resemble? 2) What native animals use it to rest, to roost and to raise their young? and 3) Where is it located?
Walters, Heidi. 2005. Stories, sea lions and mysterious night birds live on the coast's sea rocks. North Coast Journal, October 13, 2005.
Lechner, Hans. 1998. West of Westhaven: A walk along Trinidad Scenic Drive. Hans describes his hiking adventure.
Waterman, Thomas T. 1920. Yurok Geography. Reprinted in 1993 by the Trinidad Museum Society, Trinidad, California.
Photos by Jim Popenoe