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After each clue you can read up about some facts and stories of the area you have just visited. Or just skip straight to the next clue below this:
Clue 1 Facts & Stories
(You can also find these at the end)
The border wall in the Pacific Ocean.
One kind of barrier or another has existed here since the early 1990s.
Previous fences couldn’t withstand the tidal battering. A barrier constructed of oil-drilling pipes in the early 1990s quickly corroded. Waves washed away some of the steel posts, and others broke off. In 2006, U.S. Marine divers tried to erect a fence made of train rails by manoeuvring the rails in the water so they could be pounded in by a pile driver.
Mexican resident, Netza Tapia, 40, said he remembers the days when he would slip through the corroded section of the fence to continue his family walks on the Imperial Beach side of the beach. Jonathan Parra and his friends used to breach the wave-battered gaps regularly to play soccer on Imperial Beach’s relatively empty stretch of sand.
In late 2011 and early 2012, the “Surf Fence” Project replaced the old bars that form a barrier on the beach and extended it 300 feet into the ocean.
A Timeline of California
1579 – California’s Settling
The California coast was explored by Captain Francis Drake in 1579, resulting in the territory’s claim under England. However, even before this, Spain had been exploring and already settled in California,
1821 – Mexican Rule
California fell under Mexico’s (then called New Spain) rule a year after Mexico gained its independence from Spain in 1821.
1849 – The Gold Rush Era
The striking of gold in California soil brought thousands upon thousands of prospectors and settlers to the state. It’s estimated that a huge $2 billion worth of gold was mined in California. The huge overflow of settlers caused much distress to the land’s Native American tribes as the arrivals violently forced the tribes to uproot themselves.
1850 – Becoming the 31st State in America
California was named the 31st state of the Union on September 9, 1850.
Late 1800s – Opening of Transcontinental Railroad
The building and opening of the Transcontinental Railroad meant it was possible to transport commodities such as coal from California to other states. Eventually, the invention of refrigerator cars led to California being the number one agricultural producer,
1906 – Disaster and Rebuilding
The devastating 1906 San Francisco earthquake influenced the idea of rebuilding San Francisco with stronger and more earthquake-resistant materials.
Late 1900s - Birth of Silicon Valley
Region in the southern part of the San Francisco Bay Area. The word "silicon" in the name originally referred to the large number of companies manufacturing computer chips (which use silicon). Today more than 30 Fortune 1000 businesses are located here.
Below, adverts like these for transport to gold fields of California became common across America during the gold rush.
Exit the photo mode by clicking on the arrow in the top left corner.
Re-align your view to north by click once on the compass in the corner.
Zoom out to a desired height and scan up the coast northwards.
Look for the distinctive spot pictured below, once found stop here.
Tip - the further you zoom out the quicker you will be able to find this but be careful not to over look it! Zoom in to check any suspect locations.
What is the only British landmark within this area? Use the full title.
Identify what type of transport hub this is.
Scan northwards along the coast and you will find 2 more of these situated a couple of blocks from the coast.
Stop at the 2nd one.
What is the name of this? We are only looking for 2 words.
This transport hub points inland and to the coast.
Follow the direction it points to the coast and locate this spot on the beach:
Did you know - how Venice Beach got its name?
The famous stretch of beach you are now on was referred to as the 'Venice of America' and was founded in 1905 by tobacco millionaire Abbot Kinney as a 14-mile beach resort town. Read up about its oil fields on the facts on the next page.
Here click into 3D mode and scan northwards along the coast ticking off these landmarks as you go (you will need to zoom in & out and spin around to see them).
Firstly this point which is the end of a very famous east / west driving route across the USA. Identify this by studying the photo and looking for the correct landmark named on Google Earth.
Check you are in the right place below, what is the number of this route?
From here study the lifeguard towers on the beach and stop at this one (the view in the picture is 3D from the ocean):
Did you know - where the lifeguard towers made famous from Baywatch were filmed?
Baywatch was prominently filmed at Will Rodgers State Beach slightly to the north of this spot. There are 158 lifeguard towers along the Los Angeles County coastline and each of them can be moved by tractor in case of storms.
Zoom out from this lifeguard tower and identify the main road which is both inline with this tower and runs inland.
What is the name of this road? Write it exactly how it appears on Google Earth and use this as the password to access the next clue.
Stuck? Try re-reading the question carefully picking up the key points.
Give up? Get the answers below for a 20 minute time penalty (if you are playing for leisure ignore this and to see the answers put in an email address).