Morro Bay, California

Well, we have finally managed to get out of the house on a real, live continuation of our traveling while still ensconced at home. We did a quick trip to Pinnacles over Thanksgiving with the bestest of friends, but what with the eating, and fire huddling it can’t be said we explored the park to its fullest. It is a park that warrants a return, but maybe when it’s a bit warmer. Damn it was cold.

We arrived in Morro Bay just in time to set up in the dark. Since its not uncommon, Simon is able to set up without the aid of sight. Its warm enough out so right now we are sitting outside marveling at how nice it is even though it could pour down on us at any moment. The kids are playing with candle votives and wooden matches. Its keeping them perfectly happy, and I recommend it as a craft for the over tens. That’s just how crafty I am. Simon is having a plinky plunk on the guitar. He has naturally gravitated to the soundtrack that ran throughout our 8 months on the road. I’ll gather all the songs and find the widget, and you too can have the revolving soundtrack in the background. Maybe Olivia will pipe up. She has a stunning voice but, due to typical teenage stubbornness, getting her to sing takes alignment of stars.

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Practical info: Morro Bay SP has pretty good RV parking. There’s some shrubbery between us and the next guy which is really all you can hope for. Anything above that is bonus. If I can stay motivated, I’ll hit the showers and let you know how what ring of shivering hell they are. Had I known from the beginning how the state of a shower would have the power to make me ecstatic, or turn me into a shivering bitch, I would have come up with an intricate scoring to catalog every one. Showers We Have Taken deserve their own post I’ll just provide a quick description of Morro Bay’s amenities:

Braving the dark and the rain, I arrived in the tiled room with partition that is customary to the state park shower. The insect de jour was a trail of ants. Since they weren’t traipsing anywhere near my towel, I ignored them. 3, count them, 3 hooks, tile bench, and a spitty shower head that means needle mist was all mine. Shit. So in go two quarters, water goes on….and it’s not the dreaded needle mist! Somehow it comes out like a normal shower. I am still all dressed, however. I will choose grubby and warm over shivering and clean in most situations. It moves from hose cold, through tepid, into almost hot enough. This is where it often stops, but this one kept heating up. BLISS! Hot shower! It’s all going to be a-ok. I shovel in a couple more quarters and think to myself that travel is the best thing in the whole wide world.

time passes…..

We sallied out for a wander as the rain let up and headed to the estuary walkway. Its a titchy little walkway but if you are a birdwatcher you could probably spend all day along it. Since it was warm, the rain didn’t matter.

We wandered down to the nature center, and along the beach. We did a few Letterboxes that were on site, read all about the Rookery, and talked about what trails to do the next day.

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Black Hill trail was the winner since we could take the dog on it. We got Mavis just after the election (will it be like 9/11 in the way you knew exactly what you were thinking the moment you heard? How long will the taste of it remain in my mouth?) She’s a rescue pup of ears and impossible coloring. We are all very smitten which is a good thing because until she can spend more time in the crate, we cant leave her for hours to go off on hikes that don’t allow dogs.

Black Hill is a steep but not long hike up that gives you a beautiful view of Morro Rock and the harbor on one side, the estuary on the other, and the unadorned hills behind you. We found a Letterbox up there, as well as a Geocache stash. An orange and an apple later, down we trooped.

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Well, it is pissing down and our poor little RV has a bitch of a leak above the cab. This damn leak continues to defeat us despite the gallons of goop slathered on the roof and around the windows. It has never been an issue until now, however. The weather report for the next ten days is unkind to a leaky heap so we have decide to cut bait and head home on Fri. I’m slightly heartbroken but I’ll live. This decision took up most of the morning (after two rounds of tea and toast in bed). The rain pounded down, but what with the leak and all, it was more of an anxious sound than one to be embraced.

Friday had a good weather report during the day so we pulled up stakes and went 10 min down the road to Montana de Oro State Park. Montara runs along a spit of land in Los Osos. We headed all the way to the far end of the park and went into the PG&E controlled part of the bluffs to The Point Buchon Trailhead.dsc07609

It is still used as ranch land. The pastures run to the edge of the cliffs that overlook rock beaches and arches of rock that long ago divorced themselves from the cliffs.

We saw whales breaching, and the spouts of many more; seals looked at us from the coves; ground squirrels wondered when we were going to move on; and kestrals looked for something squeeky from fenceposts. It was freakin David Attenborough out there. We didn’t do this trail with Mavis, and the trail gate closed at 4:00 so we had a lazy walk back and headed to route 1.

On the way north, we stopped in Cayucas to check it out. For sunset, we found a slightly crittery beach full of local dogs, and driftwood teepees. What with the smell of the delish tacos gotten from the Ruddell’s Smokehouse mixing with the smell of the locals’ pot on the breeze, it was a pretty ace end to a quick four days.

more pics: