Having enjoyed everything we could squeeze into our short time in L.A., it was time to move on. Back onto the PCH and north. Leaving Santa Monica, we head into Malibu. Yeah, I can see why all the celebs are moving here. I would too. To make it all the more perfect, as we drive along through Malibu, we can see a dolphin playing in the surf. Sweet.
Further north, the PCH leads inland, and back out to the coast a few times. This gives us the chance to see some more diverse topography. Lots of hills, farms, and vineyards, and then some absolutely incredible views of the Pacific Ocean.
After about four hours on the road, we were still amazed at the views around every turn. As Kelli is watching the views of the water, she notices what appears to be a jet ski splashing through the water, but all of the sudden, it was gone. She sits up alert, staring at the water, and tells me to pull over immediately! We pull onto the shoulder, and she explains what she saw as I begin scanning the water with her. Lo and behold, as our jaws drop, a whale! “Thats a f–king whale!” we exclaim together! We did not expect that at all. A quick glance, and I spot a better place to pull over. A little place called Hearst Park. It even has a small pier so we could walk, nay, run out over the water for a better view.
The humpback whales (there were two) came closer, and one swam in to the small bay for some feeding. It was absolutely amazing to see something like this. It was unbelievable to see the ease with which she could move through the water, disappearing here, and reappearing over there. As she feeds, she circles closer and closer to the pier, until she swims just below us for an amazing view.
After just over twenty minutes of watching this massively graceful creature, we decided that we needed to keep moving in an effort to make good time. Back on the road, and just a few minutes north, we came across an Elephant Seal Rookery. Okay, cool. I’ve never seen an elephant seal either, so we had to stop to see this too.
Any other time, this would have been awesome, but we were just watching a whale! There were these incredibly huge seals laying all over the beach, with males belching out challenges to the other males in a show of dominance. Cool, but not whale cool.
We got back on the road, and decided that we should only stop for gas, and try to make up some time.
The PCH twists and turns along the ragged coast, up and down the cliff face as it slowly squirms its way north. It’s absolutely beautiful, but not good for somebody on a time schedule.
On through Big Sur, and Monterey, but we can’t stop. Just another place for us to re-visit when we have more time. Mile after mile, we are stunned by the beauty that surrounds us.
Third Stop: San Francisco
As the sun began to set, we consult the GPS only to realize that we still had hours to go before we got to our destination. Sadly, we had to leave the PCH and head inland to the Interstate. At this point, there was no reason other than the principle idea of staying on the coast. It was dark, we could no longer see the sights, and we were making even worse time now. We even called ahead to the hotel to make sure they had late check-in because we were running so far behind schedule.
Taking so long to get to our destination didn’t leave us with much time to explore the city. Due to time constraints, most of the touristy things to do were out of the question for us here. The majority of our visit to San Francisco was simply driving around town trying to see the sights while driving.