High Coast Country
July 24, 2013
Big Sur rightly has a reputation for nature and tranquility at its finest. Perched high on the cliffs along the Pacific coast between Cambria and Monterrey, Big Sur is not a city, but rather a strip of land in the high redwood forest overlooking the ocean far below. It is also a state of mind–an ethereal place–where fog drifts among the majestic trees as the sound of huge ocean waves wafts over the landscape. Here you can be lost in time and space and at the same time feel connected and grounded.
We walked a road less traveled as we wound up the coastal mountain above our lodging. At the bottom, we could touch the huge trunks of the towering redwoods and as we traversed higher we realized that our cliff side walk had led us to the top branches of the very same trees. Gentle waterfalls and mountain deer were all close at hand. And the views of the Pacific over a thousand feet below were no less than spectacular, especially to see the huge waves gather their might off shore as they marched toward the shore. And the colors–dark green of the trees, verdant green of of the hills, deep blue of the ocean turning to turquoise as it neared the shore, yellow of the flowers and grey of the drifting fog mixed with white of the clouds–would have made any artist eager to reproduce the sight. And we were above it all looking down and we were alone–all alone–and lost in our thoughts.
Our lodging is on the national register of historic sites and is run by a foundation dedicated to keeping it in its original state. It might not be for everyone, but we are having a glorious time. Everything is so California–while rustic, it is rustic with style–nothing uncomfortable, yet in every detail, antique and quaint…like original hand-hewn doors that can be made into half doors with the top half latched to the wall with a hook…like candle light dining in quaint rooms with a fire place…like every window having a view of something beautiful…like quiet rules and no children allowed (unless you book an entire wing to contain their noise)…like no television, radio or internet or sodas or unhealthy food…like creaky wooden floors and small bathrooms…like high comfortable beds with wonderful bedding…like no keys to rooms because they do not lock from the outside but are secured at night with an old fashioned latch…like rocks on the floorboard to be used as doorstops to keep interior doors from tilting open. (In case you were wondering, my wife did not drag me to some commune.) You probably get the picture and it all seems to sum up what Big Sur is all about. WEG