Leaving the city behind us and heading back to the coast we were greeted by amazing views of the ocean, wide expanses of colourful wildflowers, wide empty beaches, rugged rocks, breaking waves…..
Now this is more like what we had expected of the ocean road. Despite the sun shining the windy was brisk and chilly.
Stopping at Shell Beach we set off down the steep colourful path to the beach.
Lovely beach, now more volcanic black shingle than the soft white beaches south of San Francisco, but not a shell in sight!
Stopping every now and again at the many viewing points we slowly made our way.
Until we turned round a bend (one of the many many bends on this winding road) to find a queue of cars. We had seem plumes of smoke in the distance but not given it much thought, now however we did think about it!
One of the drivers of the other cars said they had been there for an hour, no official word but one of the Park rangers had acknowledged it was ‘bad’. Apparently a helicopter had flown over and offloaded water and left, possible for more. A couple of police cars and park rangers then passed us, and we were trying to work out how long it would take us to return when we realised there was no way to return and get to our overnight stay tonight.
Fortunately we soon started to snake forwards, they were actually letting us past a still smouldering forest fire, at least seven fire engines and equally the same number of police and park rangers vehicles in high winds! Scary, but to be honest a relief that we would reach our accommodation without too much of a delay!
After such excitement we were pleased to be able to check in then enjoy a stroll on the beach watching the surfers, with a dead camera battery, before a well earned rest.
After a good breakfast the road was more of the same stunning scenery, so much superior to the Big Sur which everyone raves about and is crowded, this road was almost our own.
Stopping at Glass Beach we walked the beach looking at the small pieces of glass which make up the beach. The end was bitter but that didn’t deter us exploring. Apparently the beach used to be used for dumping glass bottles before they realised the ecological dangers of such practice.
The result after the pounding of the sea and rocks on the bottles is small pebbles of glass of varying colours shining in the sun.
After this we headed inland again on a road which had the compass on the car spinning, so many hairpin bends were there on it! Climbing steeply one minute, dropping rapidly the next, Amr thought he was a formula one driver.
Eventually we entered the Redwoods National Park, following the Avenue of Giants for 32 miles of ginormous redwood trees. Such enormous trees blocking out the light from above.
We couldn’t resist the drive through one of the trees on the road!
Stopping for a walk through them we felt like Alice in Wonderland they are so tall, wide and old