Friday, July 27, 2012

San Simeon Camping - 2012

Last week, the familia and I packed up the minivan and headed north to San Simeon for a good old fashioned camping trip.  San Simeon is one town away from the world famous Hearst Castle.

Ok, so it's neither world famous nor a castle.

Need a better frame of reference?  It’s about 2 hours north of Santa Barbara, smack dab on the water’s edge.

This is our second year in a row camping at this campground, and this time around proved an even better experience than the first.  We scored a site so close to the water that we could walk there in under 3 minutes.  The view was as good as it gets.

Anyone care for a stroll on the beach?

But it was cold.  So, so cold.

Well, cold for me, that is.  My idea of the perfect temp is 82, and it was 65 on the coldest day.  Fortunately, the nights weren’t much worse, and I had toughened up by sleeping with the window open for the month leading up to the trip.  Me and my 5 layers of clothing were ready for those chilly 55 degree nights. 

I thought it was an unfortunate coincidence last year that our site had been so breezy.  It definitely added to the brrrr factor.  Turns out, this part of California is known for being breezy, so this year, in addition to the swim suit and tank tops, I brought along a scarf to the beach.  And used it.  Sure, I got some looks, and an old lady used it as a conversation starter, but at least I was warm amidst a sea of goose bumpy females.

I felt justified when the 17 year old in the group said, “I’m beginning to think NW was the smart one out of all of us.”  Coming from her, that was high praise.

Despite the sub zero temps, the trip was perfect, start to finish.  One day, BH took the boys kayaking, and when the boat flipped and almost brained P, they all proclaimed it the best part of the day.

This year, we decided to go fancy with the meals, so one night we had Korean bbq and another night we had Shish Kebobs.  We weren’t exactly roughing it; we drove in to town for lunch each day.  The best part about beach camping in So Cal is that you’re always near some amazing BBQ places, like Sebastian’s in San Simeon and Main Street Grill in Cambria.

Good eats in here.

On our way home, we decided to check out some new beaches, Moonstone Beach in Cambria and Montana de Oro in San Luis Obispo.  Moonstone is one of those beaches that boasts a pebble shoreline filled with natural California jade.  The boys and I saw stars in our eyes when we saw how much jade there was to be had.  Imagine all those jewels!  Turns out jade is not so easy to polish, so in the end, we’re left with a bunch of green rocks.  No matter, the time we spent combing the beach was the stuff of memories.

My plunder.

Montana de Oro was the best surprise of all.  This beach took for-EVER to get to, but what a beautiful strip of coastline.  64 degrees and gloomy didn’t even put a dent in the beauty of this place.  You know, I think it might’ve even enhanced it.  We climbed rocks, explored tide pools, and took pictures galore.  This beach has a campground attached to it, but the facilities are primitive (read:  dig your own toilet), which is a deal breaker in BH’s book.  Too bad.  I would love to stay here for a few days.

And thus concludes the recap of the Number Whisperer’s San Simeon Camping Trip of 2012.  Next up:  El Capitan camping.  This trip will be sans friends, just the kids and us.  Wish me luck.


Rebeccah said...

oh wow. just wow. right now here it's about 112 (literally) with 90% humidity. the whole state is going insane with the heat, myself included. i'm so jealous. normally i'd agree with BH about the toilet but at this point, i'd be happy to pee in a hole in the ground. sigh...

NumberWhisperer said...

Rebeccah, if I were in 112 degrees with 90% humidity, I'd be really irritable. All the time.