The thing that looks like a large cloud on the
ground between the palm trees and the mountain
is our evening fog. It is caused by the marine
layer. A warm cushion of air from further out in the Pacific
that slides in across the cool coastal waters.
The water is cool here because it follows the pacific currents down the coast from
cold places in the north.
Given the right conditions,
the fog slides in as the sun goes down and will not
leave the beach till around ten in the morning.
Of course, in June, the fog covers the whole city
and only leaves for about ten minutes in the afternoon.
We call that "June Gloom".
As long as you can stay back from, or above it, it
is actually very beautiful. My office at UCSB
used to sit at the perfect point at the limit of the
fog. I could watch it swirl outside my window,
but it never really got to my office.