Sunday, November 20, 2011

Northern Californial Part II

Tuesday morning we were off on our next adventure, a trip down the coast highway to Monterey and Carmel then a day visiting the Aquarium.  I was pretty excited as the Aquarium is something I have wanted to visit for a while, surprising eh?  all those fishies and stuff ;)

The drive was spectacular and California served up another georgeous day.  We ate sandwiches on the Santa Cruz pier and rolled into Monterey an hour or so later.  Travel guide (sister) Karen had mapped out the route and we expertly found our way to the 17-mile drive through Pepple Beach.  I am so moving there (if I win the lottery or find a really rich guy to marry me).  Amazing oceans views, sea lions, sea otters, what's not to love!!! 


Pepple Beach
Pepple Beach

We indulged Dad and stopped in at the Pepple Beach club house and strolled out to the 18th fairway.  I guess if you are a golfer you can appreciate the need to do this ;)

We arrived into Carmel and caught just the last little bit of the sunset before grabbing a great Japanese Seafood dinner in town. 

Jellies at the Monterey Aquarium
Up early Wednesday morning, we weren't quite the first ones in the door of the aquarium (but close).  I was a little nervous that I would be disappointed and expecting way too much, but I was very impressed.  We started with the feeding of the sea otters, very cute, then headed over to the open sea exhibit.  The walk through the jellyfish display was impressive and watching the schooling sardines in the giant tank, well I probably could have stayed there all day mesmorized.  We moved onto the kelp forest tank which housed one of my favourites, the leopard shark.  The penguins were a bit lazy and just hung out, but I guess that's what they do most of the day.  Had tons of fun at the splashponds where you could reach in an touch some of the creatures.  I convinced a young boy to reach in and pet the Bat Ray's.  Pretty sure a future in maring biology is in his future!!  Overall very, very impressive and well worth the trip.

Thursday saw us say goodbye to the parents after a great visit while I got to stay on for a couple more days.  The weather was starting to turn a bit ugly but thankfully cleared up perfectly for the Saturday morning Studio Velo/ Purple Patch ride.  The ride was the Alpine loop with an added drop down to the coast and back along hwy 1.  The ridge road, also know as the seven sisters served up some stunning  views to go along with the seven leg burning climbs. 

Seven Sisters - Mt. Tamalpais
We wanted to head out to watch the Single-Speed Cross Worlds in the city Sunday morning but just couldn't get motivated to brave the cold wet weather.  Instead we enjoyed a leisurely morning before I headed off to the airport. 

Back in Tucson and back to work.  Getting in lots of miles on the bike and loving it.  After two weeks back on the road I decided Thanksgiving was the appropriate day to take the mountain bike out for a spin.  A bit sketchy to start out with but so exciting to be back on the trails.  Good thing because I am signed up as part of a four man team for next weekends Dawn to Dusk mountain bike race in McDowell Mountain Park.  

Hope everyone enjoyed a great Thanksgiving!!!

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