Montaña De Oro State Park: Exploring Morro Bay Area part one

Ryan and I came to this area with no preconceptions or schedule.  We followed our noses over the course of several days which mostly led us on breathtaking coastal hikes and other free or nearly free adventures. Image.


a veritable field of ice plants- that’s what they call them. A beautiful, prolific and common ground cover here that blooms in purple and yellow.


the Big Boy gets around

This series of photos was taken one morning in April (a few weeks ago) in the Montana De Oro State Park near Los Osos.  This is about midway between LA and San Fransisco in southern California.

If you love drama, rocks, waves, wild flowers and tide pools, you’ll have a hard time getting enough of this area.  It is just amazingly beautiful and actually got its name from a golden flowering plant that’s common here.  

But don’t wait to get out and enjoy our public lands!  According to Wikipedia, this area was one of the 48 California state parks proposed for closure in January 2008 by California’s then Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger as part of a deficit reduction program but stayed open due to public outcry.  What a terrible loss that would have been.

Environmentalists take heart!  Sometimes you do get your way.  Here we are, 6 years later enjoying peak life experiences in these great public spaces.  

Take a peek at the outrageous beauty.



the Pacific exhales


A California Coastal Gem called Carpenteria

Who hasn’t heard of Santa Barbara and Ventura California? But Carpenteria was new to me and I am so glad for the introduction.  It came as a recommendation of a seasoned nomadic adventurer who was considering settling down there.  We spent the night on the side of a downtown street near the Amtrak station and took a morning stroll down to the ocean.DSC_0829


This is the little town of Carpenteria between Santa Barbara and Ventura just a short ways from LA

Here's the shady spot where we spent the night near a charming train station then strolled up a short way to the beach the next morning.

Here’s the shady spot where we spent the night near a charming train station then strolled up a short way to the beach the next morning.

This is the short photo safari I took while on our stroll.

DSC_0830 DSC_0831 DSC_0832 DSC_0833 DSC_0834 DSC_0835 DSC_0839 DSC_0840 DSC_0841I especially love the interpretive playground where kids can pretend they are Chumash Indians and/or sea dwelling creatures.  It is so well done.  A great little community asset.  The area was delightfully quiet and quaint with a very friendly feel.  For fun loving traveling families looking for simple pleasures this spot is a winner.

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