from door to door including a stop in cambria for a bbq tri tip sandwich and onion rings at the main street grill, it took me 8.5 hours to get home. it takes 6 to get there going the mary ann moss route. i'll lay it out for you in case you want to try it sometime. 134/2/210/5/198/101/68 no need to state the directions as it will be obvious. my fav little hwy for the cut-across is 198. blissfully scenic and lonely.
promise me if you come here you will only use a real paper map to navigate. promise.
i prefer taking the north south route down hwy 1. more visually stunning as you are going downhill most of the way, the views are better, and if you're the driver you're closer to the water. so i take this route home from the monterey peninsula.
68/1/101/226/118/210/2/134 yeah. i hit a couple of little hwys for fun and i never ever ever take the 101 all the way into greater LA. it's a real pain in the tuchus. especially on a sunday. i like to skirt around the LA basin and drop down from the north.
never. ever. ever. in all my 20 plus years of going down hwy 1 have i ever see the water this light-filled, this blue, this dramatic.
this stretch of coastline has some of the most inaccessible beaches. the mountains plunge into the ocean and unless you can rappell, carve your own path down, or approach by water in a kayak, you'll be stuck at the top admiring the view. i like that there are wild places where humans can't go.
i stood for a long time, inhaled the cool air, and let the wind blow around me.
eventually i climbed back in my chariot.
and saw around every curve a new tableau.
you say NO the water cannot be that blue. yes. it is.
real. true. blue.
there is a kind of succulent clinging to the mountains – ice plant – it stabilizes the soil, but is terribly invasive, though beautiful from afar.
water mountains sea fog
a crushing combination. that makes my heart swell with love for california.
Robin Hawkins says
I enjoyed your beautiful pictures very much. I live in Indiana and don’t know if I will every make it to California but you gave me a truly nice view of it. I have a blue zircon stone that is the exact color of that water. I would have stood there like you described and took it all in and let the wind blow and smell the air. Thank you for that ride down the coast.
We drove the coast from Ventura to San Francisco a few years ago. It was my first time in California, and I’ll never ever forget. It was amazingly beautiful and we stopped so many times the first two days that it our schedule went out the window (or out the top of our rented convertible!) I hope to come back someday to see it all again, and more. And we did use a paper map!
Jane Bumar says
Sensitive, evocative, moody, I feel the pull too. Was lucky enough to drive the PCH from Santa Rosa north into the Redwood Curtain this past May, and saw the surges and power of the incredible blue Pacific. Moves the soul.
My first Home!!!
My True Home!!!
There was a longing for it before , though the hum was tamped way down.
Now it is ramped up to a Loud Roar….
and the tears have flooded my face, girlie. Thanking you for the ride.
Peace and beauty, all ways…ALWAYS.
Cat Graves says
That drive is high on my list of places to go someday. Your pics are awesome! Very inviting!
I know the 198 well…but unfortunately, I do not know the scenic part. :-/ Hanford to Visalia…blck. Hanford to Lemoore…blck.
Your drive sounds fabulous! We will have to give it a go sometime. We usually drive (from Hanford) via 198/41/46 to Cambria and travel up Hwy 1 towards Big Sur and/or Monterey…if we want to take a scenic (but long) route.
Carol Kitchell says
Beautiful. Beautiful. Beautiful! I made one trip to California, and I’ve always remembered the stunning coast. Went from San Diego to Seattle. I would love to come back to California. Maybe to live.
Jan Jackson says
Stunning, absolutely stunning.
Sherry Green Peck says
You are truly a fabulous travel guide!! Clearly a Beautiful place!! No words can describe…..thanks for the little trip and breath of cool fresh air!!
So beautiful! Your posts wash a wave of serenity over me.
Jane S. in PA says
Wow! What a beautiful show the sea puts on. Thanks, Mary Ann.
OMG, I miss California.
But it’s nothing to how much I miss the Cambria tri tip sandwich. We almost had to cut our trip short because the smell of it cooking all over the whole town made me keep stuffing my face with them. Gorgeous place!
OMG, the Pacific coast is so much more beautiful than the Atlantic (which I grew up with) or the Gulf (where I am now in FL).
One time about 8 years ago I drove from Santa Ana to Santa Barbara. Sooooooo beautiful in SB. Maybe someday I’ll get to go back there. Anyone wanna buy a bunch of art supplies to help pay for my airfare? 🙂
Holly Hudson says
my views were much foggier, but the BIG joy to me was seeing all the pumpkin fields! I never ever thought pumpkins would be happy to grow in California….silly me, always thought it was a mid-Atlantic/New England plant…..travel truly corrects many many misconceptions/assumptions !!
donna, doni, lady d says
deep, deep, deep breath. le sigh. xodonna
Kelli Rootes says
What gorgeous photos! Love the blue blue water!
Sheila Earhart says
Erin Perry says
Gotta love our coast!
These photos are peaceful and stunning. The water color is unbelievable. This reminds me of a wonderful trip we took a year ago April to an area in No. California that if I”m not mistaken, I got some ideas about from one of your posts…a certain beach…(We stayed at a cottage perched on the edge of a cliff 100’above the Pacific.) Anyway, beautiful and always fun to see your adventures.
Susan Howard says
absolutely lovely. hubs and I took a road trip from Bodega Bay north on hiway 1 last month, navigating via a paper map. it was exquisite.
Thank you SO MUCH for these gorgeous pix of my beloved California coast…and the wonderfully BLUE Pacific Ocean. I’ll gaze upon them longingly as the snow falls here in Ohio all too soon.
Lynn Dirk says
The Pacific is so BLUE, because it misses me too.
Those photos are stunning. That’s all I can say. I cannot imagine such a gorgeous color of blue and your photos make me want to hop in my car and head south to take that drive! In the meantime,I can take a deep breath here in Oregon and imagine a day when I will take that trip, using only a real, paper map. Thanks so much for your inspiration.
Nancy from Fair Oaks, CA says
I’ve been lucky to see many places in the world and even though I live in Northern California I still get goose bumps when I drive on Highway One in any direction.
Laura McHugh West says
Must be all that cesium 137 making the water so blue. Not. Thanks for posting that article about Fukishima. It articulated everthing my engineering/former consultant to the nuclear power industry brain was thinking.
Linda Watson says
Beautiful. When I’m there, it’s like no place else exists. I love seeing it through your eyes/lens.
Susie LaFond says
all I just can say is i wanna go someday, roll and bump along every so slowly or as slow as the speed limit allows and take it all in, the sea, this is what I yearn to be closer to with all my being. It’s my inner westward pull in action, it’s been there for as long as I can remember…really but for now I’m gonna sit here and marvel at the views through your eyes/lens and dream a little longer or as long as it takes…between the pull of the waves and your charm, i’m starting to wonder what is stronger and which one is winning. 😉
Your photographs are just wonderful!! Thanks for the inspiration.
I can smell the fog and the salt of the breaking waves, feel the sun on my face, the cool air on my neck and arms.
Lois Reynolds Mead says
oh, nice one…
Glenda Hoagland says
Traveling with you is a dream
Lisa Hoffman says
just what we needed here in cool/foggy/drizzly Colorado: a snapshot of Paradise.
Your Blog is like a really delicious, visual Escape-Pod.