Have I ever told you how much I love the Sunshine State? Well, I do. It seems to be my third home these days. But the Central Coast… not so much. I never go there! (Okay once or twice when I was in college I drove up to Seattle, but the only thing I remember is smoking out to Mazzy Star and staying in weird motels. Don’t judge.) A few weeks ago, we decided to take Highway 1 from San Francisco to San Luis Obispo before heading home to Las Vegas.
Thankfully this journey was different than my last. I was older, completely lucid, and with my husband and children. Although it was planned at the last minute (homage to 1994!), everything somehow managed to work out. We left San Francisco (future post), stopping as many times as they’d let me (see *Sidenote) and drove until the road closed just after Big Sur. We thought we might have to backtrack, which would have been disheartening given we’d already driven 5 hours straight (minus my insatiable need to stop every 2 minutes for a photo.)
*Sidenote: Ever wonder what it’s like to travel with a photographer? Who wants to go on a road trip with me? My family was ready to leave me with the “other guy” en route with us, who was apparently on the same photo journey as me. Don’t think I wasn’t tempted to hop in his Forerunner and ask my husband to pick me up in San Luis Obispo! Unfortunately, he had a tripod and well, that’s just too high maintenance for me. HA!
Anyway… we got past Lucia around dusk and realized we’d have to take the Nacimiento-Ferguson Road through the Los Padres Mountains, which was basically switchback after switchback all the way up and down the mountains. That is when I stopped taking photos as an attempt to keep car sickness at bay. An hour and half later, beeping the horn around every turn, and a drive through two different military training camps (v. weird), we finally made it out the other side onto the 101. It was one of those drives that we will never forget. But what was on the other side was equally crazy! More on that later…
Pigeon Point Lighthouse, Pescadero
The Slammer, Half Moon Bay
“Prime” real estate.
Peeking through the trees, grace meets fury.
Wildflowers, rolling hills and rocks.
The California Riviera?
A quick stop for gas, ice cream and wine at Big Sur General Store.
Wibbly-wobbly road through the Los Padres Mountains.
I fully believe in taking the scenic route at least one way! It’s important to slow down and take in the beauty that surrounds us.