On Saturday evening the deputies of Cowlitz county in Washington state got a rather unusual call. A driver reported to see a 600 pound Sea Lion walking down the road in the sleepy town of Castle Rock. In the middle of the woods, miles away from the nearest water source.
At first dispatchers where disbelieving: “I’m sorry, a dog? No? A Sea Lion?” “It just doesn’t sound right” Roy Brightbill, the chief criminal deputy at the sheriff’s office, said of the marine mammal sighting, reported about 8 p.m. Eventually officers went out and to their own amazement confirmed the sighting.
Stellar Sea Lions are common on the Pacific north coast and tend to swim upriver in their chase after food. Nonetheless they have never ventured this far in-land into a quite hilly area. “In the river the giant beasts look rather cute but in the middle of the night on a road the cuteness quickly fades”. “The barks aren’t all that cute anymore,” said officer Schroeder.
Eventually the misguided sea lion remained on the road for two days before she could be guided into a cage and brought back to the river.