Day 3: Big Sur to Santa Barbara

Packing up a dew-covered tent and carrying supplies out of the campground (just two trips back and forth this time) made for a rough start for our third morning of Pacific Coast Highway Road Trip Extravaganza 2012.

But our spirits picked up considerably when we stopped at Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park to see the secluded McWay Falls. The lagoon below is filled with bright, blue water, and a waterfall dropping onto the sand. Cliffs prevent anyone from going down to the beach, however. Anyone traveling through Big Sur should stop for the 10-minute walk and gorgeous photo op.

McWay Falls

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Day 2: Big Sur

On our second day on Highway 1, we drove from San Luis Obispo, to Cambria, through Big Sur, up to a gas station in Carmel, and back to our campground at Andrew Molera State Park. (Read about Day 1.)

After make-your-own sourdough pancakes at Hostel Obsipo, our goal for Saturday was to find a campground somewhere in Big Sur.

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Day 1: San Diego to San Luis Obispo

Our Pacific Coast Highway Road Trip Extravaganza 2012 was so much fun—and I didn’t want to leave, for obvious reasons (aka Tom is there!). Now, I’m working on a story for the paper about it. I’ll give you sections of that draft until it is published, in a four part series, detailing our awesome four days on Highways 1 and 101. (Read about Day 2, Day 3 and Day 4.)

Day 1: San Diego to San Luis Obispo

Crows ate our dinner before we cooked it over the campfire one night. Fog covered many viewpoints along California’s majestic coast. And our packed itinerary had to be scaled back considerably.

But these few setbacks couldn’t ruin our four-day road trip up the Pacific Coast Highway, which offered stops for bakeries, wildlife and postcard-worthy photos. One of the few benefits of my boyfriend, Tom, relocating to San Diego is the chance to visit the West Coast. We explored much of the city on my last visit, but this time, we wanted to see more of the grand state.

Driving the Pacific Coast Highway in the Avalon.

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23 days til our roadtrip up the Pacific Coast Highway!

My boyfriend, Tom, moved to San Diego back in October. Let me tell you, 2,600 miles is farrrrr away. At least we have Skype and phones and emails. (And letters. But someone forgets to send me any!)

Anyways, I got to go to San Diego for a few days in December, and then I wrote about it for my newspaper.

And in 23 days, I’m finally going back!! I got my plane tickets today! We’re going to travel 500 miles up the coast to San Francisco and then back, stopping plenty of places along the way. Our trip will only be for 4 days, 3 nights, so we’re probably going to have to cut down the list of sights we want to see, because right now there are too many!

Can't wait to drive here!

Have you driven along the coast of California? Any recommendations for where to go?