Thursday, April 25, 2013

2012 South to San Diego

Our yearly rides have fallen off a bit due to 'scheduling issues' between kids graduating and getting married, joining the military and and and ... well finally we got a chance to hit the road and get riding again. Not that we dont ride most of the time, but a weekend ride is like a day ride to me. I like to get on the bike and go for a week or more, now thats a RIDE!

This time we decided to take a little trip down south again to some warm country area, see some familiar sites in Santa Maria, do some winery visiting in Paso Robles and Santa Barbara, trip on down thru Malibu, take a visit to the Reagan Library/Museum in Simi Valley and then end up in San Diego to see our son that is stationed at Camp Pendleton. About a 1400 mile roundtrip excursion for us to get some riding time in.

 The trip down from Sacramento area took us thru Hollister and The Pinnacles National Park via Hwy 25 and that brought us out to the little tiny town of San Miquel where there is a Mission and a few other buildings, one of them being a market to get a cold one!  Great open country riding with nobody else but us on the road for miles and miles and miles.

 Our first night stay was in the town of Santa Maria, so we stopped in Paso Robles and did some shopping for some great foods and wines and some other junk... and headed towards the coastline from there on good ole Hwy 101. The next day we packed up and rode out to wine country around there. Its seems like every direction you go around that area is "Wine Country"!!!!   Left, Right, Up or Down... we couldn't miss a winery if we tried!
 We ended up at Fess Parkers Place of business and we met a few new friends in the drinking business and had a few rounds with them. We purchased a few odds and ends to add to our collection and then went about our way.
 We found another little town calling out our name to STOP!... it was Los Olivios. Wow and I'm glad we did. We found Epiphany Wine Cellars and we loved the place. Found some great white wines (imagine that) and loaded up with a few to take back to our next stop in Santa Barbara to watch the sunsets with. Our ride down to SB was nice but we started hitting all the traffic that we had been away from for the past couple days.... it was back.
Epiphany Tasting Room

Our first view of the coast was staying in Goleta. SB was packed with people and the room rates were outrageous so we found a nice place on the beach and watched another day end.

 After leaving Goleta we headed into the mess of traffic mazes of southern California to Simi Valley. Once we got headed up the hill area it wasn't so bad all the way into the Reagan Library. It was during the week so there weren't too many people either. What a great opportunity to see the life and history of this man as just a 'man' and nothing more. The fact that he accomplished such great things within his lifetime should be incentive to us all to be better people.

The 40th President

"Tear Down That Wall Mr. Gorbachev"

  The  most amazing part of the library is the "Hanger" where they have Air Force One raked in a takeoff angle and looking out over the entire Simi Valley area. Without a doubt something truly inspiring.
After leaving the museum we headed out the maze again and opted for a ride down through Topanga Canyon back to the coast. This was a pretty nice ride and then we found our way onto Mulholland Hwy and made the ride through this hot rod historic area to Hwy #1 down to Malibu BABY! 

  A Malibu Beach sunset... This is what every snowbird dreams of seeing and we have it right here in our backyard. What a beautiful site! We stayed the Night in Malibu and hooked up with one of my best friends who just happened to be working down in the area. We met up for dinner and drinks and hung out and caught up on some old times. When we left the next morning we were riding along and found his road crew along our route to the Pacific Coast Hwy and blasted our horns at them. We pretty much followed PCH the remainder of the way down south as much as we could. Tried to stay off the freeways and see all the little towns... man there are a lot of them!

We did have a chance to look at a boat or two while we were down in the south area.
The USS MIDWAY MUSEUM in San Diego was one of them. Quite a big boat too!
This is where the Captain sits all tells people what to do!
 After having a nice visit with our son and his wife we rested up the night in SD before embarking on a long slab ride through the wilds of LA freeways all the way back up to Cambria for the night. It was going to prove to be a crazy day of lane-sharing and riding through stopped traffic like a bullet coming out of the barrel of a shotgun. But we made it thru with no scratches or bruises and found our way to the little hotel on the beach for yet another beautiful sunset - are there any others????

From Cambria we headed back up the coast on Hwy 1 thru San Simeon, Big Basin, Monterey and then Santa Cruz before heading inland to the bay area for Mountain View. Our last night on the road would be at The Shoreline Amphitheater for a little concert in the park to see Band Perry, Luke Bryan, and                          JASON ALDEAN - can you say COUNTRY!!!!!!  

On Our way back we rode the Hwy 9 mountain route through all the mountain towns and couldn't help but to stop at Alice's Restaurant on Hwy 35 at Woodside Rd. This place just oozes coolness for bikers of all types and genres. The it was cross the bay at San Mateo and hit the Highway for the long trek home.

Nice Ride!