A Coast and Desert Road Trip

A little while back, I took a road trip around California. I headed south from San Francisco down the coast to Santa Barbara, inland up into the San Gabriel mountains, and north through the high desert and the Central Valley back to San Francisco.

A storm was pummeling the the Pacific Northwest the day I left and the rain reached down well past the Bay Area. I dressed for the weather because I planned to keep my convertible’s top down.

Highway 1 South from San Francisco snakes down a hill as it descends to the town of Pacifica. On the right, you can see the beach and the surf. Pretty soon, you realize the big city is behind you.

The rain and the wind appeared in force until I got past Monterey. After that, the road opened up.

Out from under the storm

I spent the night near Santa Barbara. The next morning, I took Highway 2 through the San Gabriel mountains. Highway 2 is twisty and the scenery is austere.

Taking a break in the high desert

I stayed overnight in Desert Hot Springs, near Palm Springs. The next morning, I started north through the inland desert. The wind was punishing and the terrain was dotted with windmills. I took I-5 up through the Central Valley. There was a grass fire along the way putting smoke into the air.

As I approached the Bay Area, the rain and the wind returned. I had come full circle.