We woke up fairly early this morning to some nice sunshine over the Laguna Seca Recreation/Raceway Area. Will reluctantly said his legs were sore and he did not think he would be up for riding today. I’m glad he told me as I would not have wanted to push him into riding and then not enjoying himself. We were orginally thinking of going to Montana Del Oro State Park and get in some riding.
The nice thing about working off of an idea vice a schedule is that you can change things pretty darn easily. After a bit of breakfast, we broke camp and hit the road. It was just earlier in the week that the Pacific Coast Highway was reopened after being shutdown for nearly a week due to wildfires burning in the Big Sur and other areas of the Los Padres National Forest. It has been quite a few years since I had been on this highway and I had forgotten just how pretty this drive can be.
We stopped at many places along the way early on to take in the sights. This was a good thing as before long the coast became completely socked in with thick fog and we could not see much at all until we were near San Simeon about 90 miles south of Monterey.
One of the really cool stops we did was at vista lookout about five miles north of Hearst Castle right off of the Pacific Coast Highway. Here you can check out a large colony of Elephant Seals. These are some big critters and the males make some mighty deep and throaty noises when other males get around their babes.
This fellow reminded me of a disgruntled Walmart customer say a earlier in the week.
We continued down the coast until we neared San Luis Obispo. Instead of going to Montana Del Oro State Park we turned inland and made our way to Mt Pinos near the town of Labec. We ended up at the Mt Pinos campground that sits at 8,200 feet and we had the pick of the place as we were the only ones there. Later that evening two more groups would come in, but for the most part we had the great views virtually all to ourselves.
We had several hours of daylight left after we got everything setup and the next thing you know Will was bucking to get on the bike and mess around near camp. I joined in on the action and played around on a log.
The South Ridge trail starts right from the campground and goes down to the McGill Campground a couple of miles down the mountain. I had to see the camp host down there so when I drove down, Will took the trail. He was pretty darn excited when he came off the trail and proclaimed it was the coolest singletrack EVER! The trail is setup as a cross-country ski trail and has plenty of small rounded jumps that are just the perfect size to catch some XC sized air. Will really dug those and I was stoked to see him stoked.
Back at camp, we enjoyed the last night of being able to have a campfire as a ban on them would start the following morning, due to the dry conditions. We climbed into the tent an hour or so after sunset. When we are back at home, Will is always trying to fight off going to bed. It is like the world is moving too fast and he is going to miss out on something if he is sleeping. It was nice to have him so easily climb into his sleeping bag. I was reading a book and I had barely turned one page when I looked up to see him already down for the count. Tomorrow we would get in a good chunk of riding in.