Leaving Lodi was good. Awesome sights and travel was in store for us.
Before we left Lodi Wanda went to get dressed and pulled a pair of shorts out of the drawer. We don’t know if this happened in Weed or in Lodi but the shorts had the crotch chewed out of them. I swore to her I did not do it. Fortunately the little bits of shredded and fluffy material along with the mouse turds in the drawer resulted in my acquittal. Had it been me they would merely have been soggy.
Later she also discovered the TP in the cupboard in the bathroom was quite fluffy and shredded. Mice love RVing too, but we’re going to kill the little bastard. Traps are baited with peanut butter kindly offered by our neighbors that have had mouse murdering experience. The traps came from the little store here at Jalama Beach Park, a county of Santa Barbara Park of which I will have more to say (about the park, not so much the store).
So we left Lodi and towards Sequoia National Park. To get there we traveled Highway 99 South to Fresno. Before the turnoff to Bakersfield (home of Buck Owens and the Buckeroos) we stopped at a Rest Area and had something to eat and a little fight. We decide we didn’t want to go to the trees this time and we would rather go to the coast and drive some more interesting routes. Highway 99 from Lodi to Fresno is not very scenic and it’s really just another freeway.
So we headed West. Highway 41. The moment we got it we realized what we had been missing out on by travelling the Interstate system. Rolling hills and scenic views unending. Livestock and funky little towns.
The finest Rest Area we have seen is along Highway 41. It’s a little Rest Area but it is beautiful. Surrounded by hills and lots of wildlife. At the Rest Area we Mr. and Mrs. Mennonite. For those that don’t know the Mennonites are Amish people that don;t have against electricity and automobiles. They do favor a similar attire.
Mr. and Mrs. M hail from Pennsylvania and travel the country in their RV every year. Usually for about 6 weeks and have been doing it for years. We talked with Mr. M for quite some time while we all watched the full moon rise over the hills. It was beautiful.
Another thing about this Rest Area is there were parking spaces setup with RV’s in mind. The spaces were about 50 feet long and 20 feet wide. Mr. and Mrs. M were going to stay there for the night, had their slide out and another had his leveling jacks down and his slides out. Clearly he wasn’t going anywhere either.
We kept on, into the darkness and drove a couple more hours to Santa Maria, Ca which lies on Hwy 101. We used to trusty AllStays app to locate a Costco store. We love Costco. We picked a spot way away from the prime parking spots, leveled the coach and slid out the slides on one side giving us much room. We went to bed and watched a little Jimmy Fallon before going to sleep.
We arose at our usual hour. I stepped out to the parking lot and looked around. I saw a vintage trailer unlike any I’d ever seen before so had to take a picture of it. I didn’t see the guy it belonged to or I would have talked with him because it was clearly a labor love that resulted in that beautiful trailer.
We went shopping at Costco! got some muffins and Wanda got some new shorts to replace the crotchless mouse eaten ones.
We had decided the night before we were going to come to Jalama Beach Park and spend two nights on the beach. It was a very good decision.
We left Santa Maria and headed south on Highway 101 to the very scenic Highway 1. From Highway 1 we take a left on Jalama Beach Road. It is 14 miles of twisting, turning and undulating road which in spots gets very narrow and has many hairpin corners and in places we straddled the center line to avoid the top of the coach having heavy tree branches scrape it. It reminded me of the road to Hana on Maui (not quite as bad) only now we’re driving a 38 foot RV pulling a car behind us. Fortunately it is very lightly traveled and we had no issues.
The pay off came when we crested a hill and rounded a corner and saw the ocean.
When we arrived at the park the Ranger advised us to unhook the car before heading up to the camp site. It was good advice. Never would have gotten up here pulling the car. Tight turns requiring backing up to make it. One thing for sure is when advice is being offered I’m paying very close attention. It’s preferable to learning things the hard way.
We had reserved a specific space online and we got to it we found it was WAY too small for our rig, forget getting the car in it too. Luckily there were other spaces and with the Rangers assistance we were able to get a different, more appropriate size space just a couple of spots over.
The view from our space is spectacular and the sunset last night was beautiful. No matter how many of them you see they are still not to be missed.
We had whales right directly out front of us this morning. These are Grey Whales and not like the Humpbacks we’re used to seeing on Maui. Grey Whales are really pretty boring and when looking at them through binoculars they just look like a big log floating out there. There were 2 or 3 of them and it was fun to watch them for a while. I think they’re still out there as I’m posting this.
Our neighbors are really nice people. Ed and I think Elaine Young. It seems all RV’ers just like us have given themselves a nickname. Theirs is “Forever Young”. Not as good as our “Rolling Stoners'” in my opinion. they’ve been RVing pretty much their whole lives. Started out in their youth backpacking and tent camping, then moved up to a tent trailer and then a 5th wheel trailer. The one they have now they have had for 15 years. Lots of good info on what to do and where to go. Gave us some good advice on how to get through L.A. with our rig tomorrow when we head to Newport Dunes in Newport Beach, CA.
I’ll video a little of the drive out tomorrow and upload it later to show just a little bit of the Jalama Beach Road.