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Pacific Coast

2004-10-11 20:09:07.906194+00 by Dan Lyke 6 comments

Saturday morning things fell into place, so after dealing with assorted issues around here we finally got out of the house circa 10:30, and, after dealing with traffic in Berkeley for a loooong time (why don't I just go through the city?) ended up in Cayucos about 4:00. Cayucos is a little town on the coast where the shoreline flattens out a bit, south of the 90 or so miles of mountains plunging straight to the sea that is Big Sur.

So we wandered out on the pier and watched folks surfing, then wandered through town. Stopped to take pictures of a few butterflies that were bothering some flowers, got into a conversation with the woman who ran the candy shop about the egrets coming in at sunset to nest in the large tree in the back. Had dinner at Hoppe's so we could sit in the back garden and watch them arrive. It was, indeed, pretty darned incredible to see all of those bright white birds perched against the green tree in the twilight. No pictures, alas, but one heck of a way to dine. And we got a few of the butterflies:

On Sunday we pedaled south to Morro Bay, a small town on an inlet sheltered by that huge rock you can see in the first picture above. The major attraction of the town is a largely unremarkable tourist district, with a few exceptions: The rock itself, of course, not legal to climb because of peregrine falcon nesting, or somesuch; The Shell Shop, an incredible blend of bygone aesthetic tastes coupled with a boatload of really gorgeous shells; and we ran into the slalom event of the World Championships of Skateboard Racing, which sucked us in to probably almost four hours of watching some amazing skills. At the bottom of the course they're probably clearing close to 4 cones a second, and the english and motion on the boards was mindblowing. No pictures, 'cause I forgot the camera, but a gorgeous pedal along Route 1 both ways, and a really fun stop in the middle.

[ related topics: Butterflies Photography Dan's Life California Culture Sports Birds Bicycling - Tandem ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2004-10-11 20:34:46.75326+00 by: polly

beautiful pictures, gonna get out that way one day!

#Comment Re: made: 2004-10-14 18:28:09.054511+00 by: TC

Sorry I wasn't around to suggest a few places down there(my old playground @ Cal Poly)....Suggestions for next time or if anyone else is heading that way McClintock's (steak sea food) Big Skyecafe(kicks Hoppes ass up and down the beach) and the thursday night farmers market is ummm excellent. Just a wee bit north of Cayucos is Cambria with places like Ians, prima, grey fox and robin's basket(best chicken curry sandwich on the planet) and of course north of there is that newpaper guy's house ummm Kane? or something

#Comment Re: made: 2004-10-14 18:40:34.491083+00 by: Dan Lyke [edit history]

#Comment Re: made: 2004-10-14 18:53:06.550682+00 by: Dan Lyke

Unless Big Skye has a view of that tree at sunset, the quality of the food is irrelevant. Although, admittedly, if we weren't on someone else's schedule we would have just hung out in the garden behind the candy store or the alley behind Hoppe's until after dark and done something else for dinner.

And next time we go I think what we really want to do is pedal through from the north end of Big Sur to San Luis Obispo, just need to hook up with one way transport back.

#Comment Re: made: 2004-10-14 20:10:06.515825+00 by: TC

Egads Dan! biking Big Sur?? It been a while since I've been there but if I recall this is a "very" narrow windy road where people pull 9' wide trailers on 8' wide lanes. Is this like an extreem death sport thing?

#Comment Re: made: 2004-10-14 22:12:45.030526+00 by: Dan Lyke [edit history]

The general concensus seems to be along the lines of this report:

Highway 1 through Big Sur has some spectacular scenery, but the riding won't suit everyone's taste. The traffic isn't exactly heavy, but it is constant. The shoulder is adequate. There's usually about a foot of pavement to the right of the fog line, and the road is full-sized. The drivers are usually alert and not drunk. If you're an experienced road rider it's no problem at all. If this sort of riding freaks you out, you'll be freaked out.

And this trip report agrees that if you do it on a weekday and get started early it's not too bad. I think the key to us doing it would be to find a place to stay between the town of Big Sur and Cambria, and do it as a three day, although by next summer we may be to the point where we can pull a hundred mile day no problem (as Charlene gets stronger our top speed is increasing dramatically, but her knee bothers her in a way that we can't do more than 25 or 30 miles in one shot).