This is the first time I've ever seen a tide pool and I'm hooked! This is a sea anemone. When you poke it it bunches up into a little ball and looks like a pile of rocks and sand. It squirts water and its tentacles are sticky like a leech. Later, I learned that you really shouldn't touch them since they've got a nasty sting.
Orange starfish like these and the purple ones like the one pictured in the "California in Mosaics and Photos" post--along with too many hermit crabs to count--abound in these tide pools. If anyone knows what they're called leave a comment and let me know!