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Spectacular Coastal Scenery

These photos of the Central California Coast almost didn't happen. The plan was a scenic drive north from Cambria to see Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park and a waterfall that empties into the ocean. It was raining hard in the morning, so I pulled over for breakfast near Gorda. There, I received word that a large boulder fell onto Highway 1 - blocking my eventual return south. It could be days before the coastal highway would reopen. Now the trip would become a big loop to Monterrey and return south on Highway 101 to eventually get back to Cambria.

Upon reaching Big Sur, I had remembered the famous Bixby Bridge from an earlier trip, but never took photos. Now the bridge was surrounded by lush, green vegetation enhanced from all the rain. I have yet to see other photos of the Bixby Bridge with surroundings as green.

The waterfall at Pfeiffer Burns is the other worthy site along this scenic drive. The park is 37 miles south of Carmel. Here you can hike in the coastal mountains, and see an impressive waterfall that drops 80-feet into the Pacific. But on this trip, the mudslides and rough water obscured a normally pretty bay that can be clear blue in calm water.

If you go during early April, you could see gray whales on their northern migration. Hopefully you will have blue skies and no landslides.

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