April 23, Monterey to San Luis Obispo

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Today we drove the most famous stretch of PCH from Carmel to San Simeon. The weather was perfect for the drive. Ton was very impressed with the trip and I was less so. For me it was less impressive than I expected, and for Ton it was everything it was built up to be. I think the difference is that for me as the driver it was just another cliffside drive, and in fact is less challenging than the stretches north of Mendocino, and between Point Reyes and San Francisco. For the passenger who can look out the window the cliffs are higher and the vistas are grander so the view is incredible.

We stopped at what I think was a private home that had planted flowers and had some art by the road near Pacific Valley. It was really spectacular and Ton spent nearly an hour taking pictures there. Not only where there great flowers but the views of the ocean were also tremendous.

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Near San Simeon we came along to a beach with thousands of elephant seals. It was fascinating watching them from up close as they lay on the beach. This colony of seals is recent with the first ones showing up in the early 90’s and growing to up to 15,000 seals. This time of year the colony is mostly made up of females and juvenile males. The males are in Alaska. They come down to the colony twice a year in the spring and the late fall.

The last stop was Hearst Castle which is now part of the California State Park system. I guess it is interesting what unlimited money and time can do. To me it is a little over the top excess, but there are a lot of interesting art pieces that were brought in from Europe.

ducksksr@gmail.com travelin tiger 2013