Remember that time we drove to Monterey…

Two words always get me excited.  Road Trip.  Something about driving to a new place.  Seeing new landscapes.  Funny conversations.  Being in the middle of nowhere.  These are all things that I absolutely adore.

For Vinita’s birthday, we decided to take a road trip to Monterey, CA, which is a 350 mile trip from Pasadena.  We wanted to check out Big Sur, but due to the insane rainy season this past winter, the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge had collapsed, so we had to create a new route.

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We started in Pasadena and headed to Santa Barbara, Pismo Beach, San Luis Obispo, Morro Bay, and then up to Monterey.

But first, Gus’s BBQ in South Pasadena!

IMG_2336– Vinita always talked about this place, and I was really excited to finally get to eat there.

IMG_2341-That wing sauce!

IMG_2342– The fries look naked, but are so good!

IMG_2343– Jalapeño cheese grits

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And our chariot for this trip – a 2016 Dodge Challenger SXT.  Not the V8, just the V6, but what a wonderful GT car.  Great fuel economy, spacious, good infotainment system, ventilated seats, good output lights, and solid for the miles that we were about to put on the car.

Santa Barbara is a cool little town.  I really enjoyed the beach there.  A bit windy, but gorgeous.

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IMG_2435 –The background looked so good, but Vinita looked even better, so we had to stop and take a photo.

IMG_2443– Here we are at Pismo Beach

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IMG_2475– Just hatched.

IMG_2480-Morro Bay

IMG_2509-Morro Rock

IMG_2505-Spoiled

IMG_2507-The view from our room at The Monterey Bay Inn

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IMG_2514-Love her.

IMG_2517– the beast did her duty getting us to Monterey

We stayed on a street called Cannery Row, which used to be a row of sardine canning facilities.  Now it is a nice little downtown area that has an amazing aquarium at the center of it.  Here are some photos of that!

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I have mentioned my love of racing and fast cars in the past.  Since we were in Monterey, I wanted to go to Laguna Seca Raceway.  This has been a race track that I have spent countless hours driving (on a video game) so it was amazing to actually see this track in person.

The one part of the track that I was really excited to see was the Corkscrew, which is a 7 story, yes 7 story, elevation drop.

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IMG_2884-long day required some time in the hot tub.

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On our day of departure, we decided to check out the sea lions that were just chilling in Monterey Bay.  It was amazing to get this close to wild life.

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IMG_2835-The seduction begins.

IMG_2840– Hello.

IMG_2856-separated at birth.

IMG_2866-I am not sure why or how she tolerates me.

 

The drive back down south was just gorgeous.  It was a slice of Americana that I had never seen.  California is such a gorgeous state that offers you mountains, agriculture, the beach, and even desert.  IMG_2867

What also made this a fun trip was the vehicle we chose.  I always liked the Challenger for its retro look.  I also liked how aggressive the car could look when properly modified.  Dodge is doing a great job with this car.  What was very surprising was how composed the car was compared to the Mustang.  I felt like the Dodge knew that it was a heavy car, so the inputs were slow, but stead, where as the Mustang wants to be a sports car, but it isn’t.

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IMG_2873– One of the coolest places ever – Lost Hills.

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-Happy Birthday Baby!