Our last day on the Central Coast is spent at Hearst Castle. As a first time visitor with limited mobility (Plantar fasciitis) my choice was the Grand Rooms Tour. I ordered tickets online, and arrived ready for an early morning tour.
Woke up to plenty of fog. It actually felt like a misty continuous rain.
Our group met at the Visitor Center where we hopped on a bus to take us from the coast up the winding road to Hearst Castle.
Taking photographs during a walking tour I needed to up my ISO (lighting sensitivity).
This pool is quite spectacular.
Once outside I had to keep my camera safe from the elements. I grabbed these quick shots. I would have loved to spend more time outside.
I am so impressed with the way the fog and light made these flowers pop.
I say good bye to Hearst Castle. There is much to see, but I am not sure I will be back.
I enjoyed my stay in Cambria. Moonstone Beach may call my name again.
Now for the 6 hour drive home to Fair Oaks. Passing some lovely landscapes. I caught these images from the car window.
Leaving the Elephant Seal Rookery we drive up the coast until we reach the Big Sur closure. After massive storms in March 2017 Hwy 1 was cut off between Cambria and Big Sur. Big construction trucks pass us going south on Highway 1. Cal Trans has been busy working to reconnect north and south. I spoke to this employee and work is ahead of schedule. Opening may be in July.
Heading back to Cambria we stop and admire the foggy coastline.
We happen upon another gem. And again, no parking fees. Yeah.
This public art points at Big Sur.
Such a nice day exploring the Central California coastline. Quiet, no hassle, get away from the noise kind of day I needed.
Sacramento is located 2 hours from the Northern coast, and during the hot summer days this is a welcome relief. This location takes a bit longer (about 5-6 hours). The central and northern coastal beaches are beautiful, rugged and cool.
We drive north on Highway 1 from Cambria, and about 4-5 miles north of Hearst Castle and come to Piedras Blancas Rookery. This is a most amazing place.
The seals started coming to this beach in 1992 when one pup was born. In 2016 5300 were born. There are always some seals here, and we arrive at a time when the seals are molting. Shedding and growing a new skin layer. When at the rookery the animals fast, and they conserve their energy. No eating or drinking at the Rookery.
Male elephant seals develop their distinctive nose (Proboscis) after they mature at 5 years. The nose is part of their status during the breeding season.
One of the best parts of this experience is that there is no fee. Plenty of parking, easy access, wheelchair accessible, knowledgeable guides, no reservations, and the ability to safely watch these magnificent animals. WOW!!!
For more information follow my links provided above. You can even watch the elephant seals be web cam.