Monterey County, CA
On our anniversary we approach Monterey’s 17-Mile Drive, looking back towards home. From Pacific Grove, the Santa Cruz Mountains loom dreamlike in the distance.
Late September means fog-free afternoons, mild temperatures, and fewer tourists. The clear water is cold and wind can be strong—most bathers are wetsuit-clad.
High tide with classic waves and rocks! There’s plenty of both along the way. At low tide, numerous tidepools open up for exploration, safe for both kids and adults.
17-Mile Drive is well known to golfers, whether or not they’ve visited. Pebble Beach Golf course runs right beside it. Golfers must address significant wind factors.
September—but here is summer fog. Not a still fog either—wet and windy. Yet whimsical towers on Spanish Bay Beach beckon drivers to get out and walk.
Further on through the fog, it’s the Gingerbread House, a storybook dwelling near the road. You’ll see many a mansion and gated estate along the drive.
The iconic Lone Cypress, forever the sentinel of this scenic area. Locals and tourists love this lone tree so much that they’ve built elaborate walls to keep it intact.
Even on a foggy day, color can intrude joyfully on the scene. Pescadero Point sports autumn-tinged ice plant, and also bright green Spanish moss on bluegreen cypress.
The end of the day, anniversary drive completed, and returned to Pacific Grove. Fog has cleared and barely a cloud in the sky. Then, on to dinner and other romantic pursuits.