California Coast, Part 1: Solace, Beaches, Elephant Seals, Other Seals, Otters, a Hike, a Lighthouse, and a Stop at 927 Beer Company

The third week of April I left Utah for a 2 week solo trip, starting just north of Morro Bay on the California Coast. I had seen stretches of the Pacific Coast in the fall of 2013, but I was told that I had inadvertently skipped some of the best parts so I began there. Besides, I needed to see water and walk on beaches, particularly after spending so long in the arid Southwest: I have always gravitated to the ocean whenever I have found myself going through a shift in my life or in need of time alone in refection. This trip, beginning with my first days on California’s central coast, helped me clarify and process many of the wonderful changes that past year and a half has brought and more importantly, reaffirm my intentions for where I was headed next.

My first two days were largely rainy and cloudy but the mist was magical, and the light – when it would pierce through the clouds – was heavenly. I spent hours watching seals, then watching different seals, walking beaches, and finally enjoying a most excellent porter at 927 Brewing Company while in Cambria while doing some reading. After spending so much time in less-populated areas over the past few years I found that I was constantly aware of the number of people around, but I found some solace nonetheless. Plus, there were lots of seals! I also did a hike my second morning along the California Coastal Trail out past Piedras Blancas Lighthouse, but in general I just enjoyed traveling without an agenda or a goal, taking the time to stop wherever I wanted to spend more time. Rainy weather and fewer daylight hours allowed for plenty of reading and thinking time my first few days, both of which I had been craving, and I found myself settling into a familiar rhythym as life became dictated by temperature, light, and weather.

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