Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Pacific Coast Highway: Mile 4

Dad, I'm adding Proposition 2 to the ballot: every road trip of duration greater than two hours shall require a minimum of one ice cream stop.

Hearst Castle hasn't yet got the hipster memo, it's got the retro vibe for sure but seems to have missed the whole minimalist thing. A mishmash of faux-Italian, faux-Roman, and faux-French ends up looking mostly like an Olive Garden. Without the unlimited bread sticks.

Oh look, they left space for Lord Lexington's highchair at the head of the table.

Are you sure it's not bath time Daddy? I think my ferry boat would make a nice reflection.

Publishing magnate William Randolph Hearst wasn't exactly known for his moderation. Why farm cattle when you can populate your ranch with half the Serengeti? After all, back before you could just make up news you had to actually have something to write about.

The elephant seals of San Simeon don't seem to be in a hurry to do much of anything. Can't really blame them when it's a cracking 70 degrees out in December.

Alas yet another mudslide shuts the PCH just north of Ragged Point, necessitating a long, tedious detour inland on Highway 101. Luckily the hot tub in Caramel Valley comes with pool boy service.

Dad, I think my birdie just flew away.

Looks like a good day to tackle the PCH grand finale, the epic drive through Big Sur.

Valet, would you be so kind as to pull my stroller around?

Caramel-by-the-Sea is basically the East Hampton of the West. So Westhampton. Except there's already one of those out, uhm, East.

Looks like that fellow back there is trying to work out which celebrity he should tag in his Instagram. Actually his phone does have a hashtag... on its rotary dial.

From sea to shining sea. Well this one is shining, the one back home is bleak and grey and has icebergs floating in it.

We drove all this way to see a bridge Dad? You know we can see one out the window at home right?

A road like this calls for a Combi with a couple of surf boards on the roof. You know, so you can #vanlife a couples times before dumping the rust bucket and sinking back in those plush Tesla seats.

McWay Falls' claim to fame is the fact it plunges directly onto a beach, which apparently is quite rare. Looks like the kind of water feature Big Bay needs to drive the next leg of growth.

The Partington Cove hike is one of the few places you can actually get down to the water in Big Sur, although even there it's only possible with the help of a pretty nifty tunnel, supposedly a relic of bootlegging in the Prohibition days.

These days there's no need for bootlegging when salubrious establishments like Ventana and the Post Ranch Inn have brought a touch of class to the windswept cliffs of Big Sur. So classy in fact they refuse to allow kids, so some bootlegging is required after all.

So this is the forbidden fruit Dad? What do they think the kids will do, jump in their koi pond or something? On second thought, that sounds kind of fun.

Tide pools are the best place to find all the ingredients for seafood hot pot in one convenient puddle.

What do you think Mommy, does this crab pair best with ginger and scallions or XO sauce?

Incoming brogrammers at 12 o'clock!

Mommy, do we get one of those cool little cars to drive?

Luckily the Times Square countdown starts at 9pm out West.

Although even that proved too much of a challenge.

Dad, I think I just laid an eagle.

The 18th hole at Pebble Beach. I tell you what son, fencing is fun and all but the bowels of a freezing gym doesn't quite look like this.

The celebrated Lone Cypress is supposedly the most photographed tree in America. So in the spirit of Silicon Valley, here's iteration i+1.

Final stop on the PCH, the tacky, sugary boardwalk at Santa Cruz beach. Helps get one back in the spirit of New Jersey for that 5am Newark arrival.

Welcome home team, it was fun while it lasted!