Morro Bay

After the beauty of Emma Wood State Beach, we were certain that nothing could be as beautiful as that place. This was somewhat  true (we were a little disappointed as we pulled in to Morro Bay – no ocean views!), but Morro Bay had a different kind of beauty. Our camp was at the State Park, located next to the golf course and across the street from the marina. No direct water views or even any water views until you walk down to the marina this time. The bay and the estuary were lovely – with the rolling hills east of the bay heading down into the creeks that connect to the bay.  The sky was often grey and cloudy with fog, until it burned off and you were left with the brilliant blue sky sparkling over the bay. Or the fog didn’t burn off and it was cool, but still lovely.

Morro Rock is what the bay is named for – it’s this huge rock mass rising above the bay on the north end. The bay itself is protected by four miles of sand dunes. We didn’t get a chance to go explore these dunes – the park to the south is most trailhead access only (no cars), so the dunes would have had to been explored on foot. Instead, the kids and I explored the beach by Morro Rock while Jon kayaked the bay.

It was an adventure just to get us down to the sandy beach. The walkway was blocked by large boulders that allowed a person to walk through a narrow path in one spot only – no problem if you’re not pushing a stroller and trying to contain an almost-three year old who is anxious to get digging. Once through this narrow pathway, I had to again carry everything and everyone one at a time down to the sandy beach, as there was no pathway through the rocks to get to the beach. Not an easy time, let me tell you! But once we were there – Sophia had a blast chasing seagull, throwing sand, and digging deep pits!

We walked the touristy area of the waterfront on morning. Sophia enjoyed the aquarium, where she and Jon fed the seals. We watched a sheepfish attack a crab and tear little bits off at a time…a bit violent, but that’s nature for you. Jon and I were able to do a wine tasting at Morro Bay Wine Sellers. They had a small area for children to sit and luckily, there was another child there for Sophia to play with. The woman who was watching the little girl even held Gabriel so I could do wine tasting (they didn’t allow any children – not even babies – in the tasting area). We were less than five feet from the kids and could see them the whole time…but it was sure nice to sit without holding anyone or having to doing anything except taste wine for a few minutes!

We ate dinner one night at the Bayside Café at the marina across the street from our camp. We sat in the lovely glass room and looked out on the bay. Sophia had fish and chips (and ketchup) and we shared a mixed bowl of steamers – mussels, shrimp, crab, and other seafood items. It was nearing sunset and it was lovely to watch all the birds. Afterwards, we went over to feed the birds our leftover bread (there were no takers) – and instead watched the pelicans dive down into the water to catch their dinner.  This was one of my favorite things that we did!

We dropped Jon off to get some work done at the Starbucks (our internet wasn’t working, plus somehow I booked us a site with no hook-ups!) and the kids and I did laundry, grocery shopped, and then had lunch. After lunch at the trailer, we were on a mission – find a playground with a slide. We had visited the playground down by the bay near the touristy area, but it was only a pirate ship (which was cool, but not so much for Sophia. I can think of a couple of boys who would have loved it though!) I managed to find a small park with several slides to satisfy Sophia’s request. After playing there for a bit, a trolley pulled up the park….and Sophia really wanted to go for a ride. The kids were free, so we hopped on. Although hopped on isn’t accurate given I had two kids and stroller to contend with! The driver held Gabriel (she kinda begged to hold him!) while I got the stroller and Sophia settled. The ride was only a half hour and actually went by the campground. We could have transferred to another trolley to go on a different route, but it was getting late and we needed to pick up Jon.

Our campsite was a bit of a mixed bag. It was a lovely location underneath the trees (we didn’t need the shade canopy) and it was cool at night (we had to use the furnace a few times). But the views were of the golf course (the green green grass area, as Sophia referred to it), which was ok. Sophia and I played chase on the green grass area, but one night Jon and Sophia were yelled at by a golfer for walking on the path. Not on the green, but the path. Needless to say, they didn’t go back to play in the grass while that golfer was there.

And then there were the people camping right by us. Many people ion the park were very nice, but the people right beside us were another story.  The camp area we were in (not the full hook-up area – which was laid out in a linear manner with neighbors only on the side of you and quite a bit of privacy from your neighbor). Our area was on a loop and it seemed everyone else around us (almost all tents) were filled with people who felt the only way to camp was to spread out their stuff as far as possible to claim the most space and then walk through our campsite to get to the bathrooms and showers. I suppose I can understand not wanted to walk around (it was a short distance though), but to walk through our area and then exclaim – oh, is this your dog?  – as Lucy walked over to investigate just who this was invading our turf.  She didn’t bark or bite, just wanted to know who these people were.  I thought about putting our kid barricades up, but then I figured people would still walk through on the outside of the barricades. The other problem with this camp was that fact that these same people who felt it was acceptable to walk through other’s campsite also thought it was ok to drive the ten feet over to the showers and honk until the person who was already parked in front of the bathrooms were done loading their things back into their car. Honk. Honk. Honk. Honk. On and on for ten minutes at a time. Honk. Luckily, this only happened one evening, but I was ready to go out and say something. I was trying to feed Gabriel and make dinner and just didn’t understand how people could be so rude. Even if I had gone to say something, I don’t think it would have mattered. These were the type of people who were yelling at their kids constantly. Thank goodness I already had some wine open…

Our next stop is San Francisco – my favorite city! We are staying at the San Francisco RV Park. We’ll be in town for Sophia’s third birthday (!!!!) and get to eat lots of seafood I hope. We’re also going to visit some friends in Menlo Park south of SF.

***I’m having trouble uploading all of our pictures to flickr from the trip. I’ll try again to do this soon!


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