For the third straight day, the Pacific Coast view was basically fog, fog, and some dim outlines of rocks in the distance. I picked up CA 1 at San Jose, and except for the occasional bubble where the highway dipped under the fog and the mountainside incline was at the proper angle to let sun slant below the fog banks, I got no beautiful blue oceans. Instead I basically spent the entire time creeping around very tight road angles because you could see about a hundred yards ahead of you, and sometimes not even that, if the mountain curve got in the way.
It was like that the whole way till just outside of San Simeon, which was of course where my route was going to take me inland towards Fresno, my stopping point for the night. I give up; clearly, the universe wants me to do the Pacific Coast Highway some other time.
One of the bubbles was Monterey, which was brilliantly sunny and gorgeous, and which was a lot more high-end resort than I remember it being the last time I was here years ago, when all I cared about was the aquarium. I was going to revisit the aquarium for nostalgia, but it’s $40 for a single adult. So no. I saw sea otters in Seattle; I ate lunch at a beachside restaurant instead, and amused myself with watching some Canada geese sunbathe themselves at the beach. Didn’t realize birds took seaside vacations too.
And then more misty driving, and then! Seals! A beach of seals, right outside of San Simeon! One of the vista points had a boardwalk dedicated to seal-viewing. I believe it’s calving season, so the darker ones are the babies. It took me a second to actually locate the seals–surprising, considering how big they are, but they just flop over and look a lot like dead fish. Your eyes have to adjust to find the content round faces at the end. The vista point was also populated with some very fat (tourist-fed, judging by the do-not-feed signs) ground squirrels, which had pretty spotted fur and which would just pose for you.