The early European explorers set out for what is now California with high hopes. They hoped they would find the Northwest Passage and legendary cities filled with riches. At the very least, they hoped to find safe ports where their ships could anchor.
After facing great hardships to reach the California coast, the explorers did not find most of what they were looking for. They never found the cities of gold or the Strait of Anían. Their voyages were costly, and many crew members died.