Carpinteria State Beach, twelve miles south of Santa Barbara, offers a mile of beach for swimming, surf fishing, tidepool exploring and camping. When Spanish soldiers arrived at the site and saw Chumash craftsmen building large seagoing canoes, the explorers called the area " La Carpinteria," the carpentry shop. Naturally occurring surface tar at the site was used to waterproof the boats. Seals and sea lions can be seen in the area December through May, as well as an occasional gray whale. Tidepools contain sea stars, sea anemones, crabs, snails, octopi and sea urchins. For more information, call (805) 684-2811 or (805) 899-1400.