Morro Bay, California came highly recommended. A neighbor in our Prescott National Forest campground told us it is his favorite place, and he also suggested a forest campground near there. We found it. Cerro Alto Campground isn’t on the beach, which was a good thing at the time, since it was incredibly windy along the coast. The trailhead for a very popular birding trail is located in the campground, so it gets a lot of day use as well as overnight camping visitors.
Once we set up camp, we headed into town. Morro Bay is a quaint seaside town with lots of shops and restaurants. The seafood we had was good, almost up to our Louisiana seafood standards. Sun-N-Buns Bakery was fantastic, so we did enjoy a couple of nice afternoon cappuccinos and sweets. We visited a beach near Morro Rock, which is one of the Nine Sisters, a series of volcanic plugs.
There was an avocado farm (grove? orchard?) with a stand on the highway from town to campground, so of course we had to stop in for me to get a couple of avocados. “WAYNE. Stop. There are AVOCADOS growing on TREES right THERE!!!” The avocado hater who shall not be named wanted no part of them. Fine. More for me. I got a nice ripe Haas and a bacon avocado, which does not taste at all like bacon. They were both delicious, sliced and sprinkled with salt and pepper.
We stayed at Cerro Alto for two nights, and decided to head north. Our next stop was Sonoma Coast State Beach, Bodega Dunes campground, located near the town of Bodega Bay. The drive up Highway 1 through Big Sur was beautiful. We were lucky to be traveling through San Francisco on a clear day and we could see everything.
The first morning at Bodega Dunes we went into town on our way to the beach to grab some coffee. Roadhouse Coffee. UH-mazing little spot. Fresh cherry almond scones. Great coffee. Super cool proprietor. Guitars and ukuleles and bongos scattered around. A wall of books. Autographed “The Birds” publicity photograph of Tippi Hedren. Organizing informational flyers about the detrimental effects “Big Wine” has on the local area. Check, check, check, annnnndd check. Love this place already.
We had planned to grab coffee and go, but ended up sitting down and soaking in the atmosphere. It was like the coffee house version of “Cheers.” Some guy would walk in and everyone was literally like, “Hey, Stan!” But we dragged ourselves away when some older ladies came in and needed a place to sit down. We “repeat offended” here the next morning, naturally.
We wanted to take Missy to a dog-friendly beach, so we picked Portuguese Beach, one of several State Beach access points, primarily because nobody else was there. This happens to be one of the most dangerous beaches on the Pacific coast. Never turn your back on the ocean. There are these things called rogue waves that can come up at any time and drag you out to sea. It was beautiful and rugged and overcast and Missy loved it. Somehow she knew not to get too close to the surf. She tried very hard to catch a “sea chicken” but they kept flying away. Keep trying, Missy!