Saturday, March 16, 2019

Trip Al Sur

Waxing Gibbous Moon

Ever since I came back from Arizona, there has been one cold rain event after another. Until this week, that is. El Sol came out on Tuesday and stayed gently brilliant every day, old school style, the OG  blazing his casual self from morning to night. How could anyone not be in a happy mood?

I enhanced the weather change with a quick truck trip down south, swinging through Paso Robles, Pismo Beach, Santa Barbara, Carpenteria, Figueroa Mountain, San Luis Obispo, Cayucos, Ragged Point, Gorda, Lucia, Big Sur, Carmel, and Monterey. The drive home up Highway 1 along the coast was ideal, primo, super, stupendous. All those rainy days are gone, erased from the memory bank by Papa Sun and Mama Surf. I heart California.

After breakfast at Vic's Cafe, a little stroll around downtown Paso Robles.
Then a quick stop at Palisades Park in Pismo Beach. Couldn't resist.

Sort of a nice place for a park.
In Santa Barbara, I joined Craig and Don and their dogs Myra and Ozzie for a sunset walk on East Beach. The lighting was simply holy. 

Ozzie left, Myra right. 
East Beach sunset.
Next morning was breakfast at Esau's Cafe in Carpenteria. Esau's used to be on State Street in Santa Barbara, but I guess the rent got too expensive. The cool vibe is just the same in Carp and so is the food - yum. A quick walk on the World's Safest Beach aided digestion.

No worries, it's Carp.
I wanted to go up to Figueroa Mountain to see if there might be a wildflower bloom happening. It was too early for a major splash, but it didn't matter. The scenery was great and the air was magnificent. It didn't hurt that I got to ride in Craig's 1990's gimme-a- ticket-red Porsche Boxster convertible up and back. A racy go cart for grown-ups.
A little color was happening on the south facing side, much too far for me to hike right now.
The Sun did not disappoint the next morning in SB, lighting up the Dolphin statues by Stearn's Wharf after breakfast at the Breakwater Cafe.

Then it was back up the 101 to San Luis Obispo to check out some new-to-me parks and museums downtown.

I especially liked Cheng Park and this disturbingly friendly creature.
Cayucos on Highway 1 is one of my favorite beach towns ever. Will it continue to survive with its sea charm and laid back surf demeanor or will the monsters of development consume it, too?

Long live Cayucos.
The Big Sur coast from Ragged Point to Carmel is magnificent, the jewel of North America. I have bicycled it three times and I have driven it too many times to count, but it never gets old, particularly when the weather is as perfect as this. I always get a fried egg sandwich at the grill in Ragged Point. Always. It is still $4.95 and as awesome as ever after all these years.

Ragged Point

Yer basic Big Sur coast pic.
I stopped at all my little favorite turnouts and reminisced about bike journeys both with different folks and solo. I am confident that this is one place that will outlive all the crazy. God rules here.

Peace, Love, and the Left Coast,

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