Day 3 – Bright blue sky through the redwoods promised another great day. We soon discovered the dense marine layer that lie below, sigh. The entire coastline from Andrew Molera State Park to Ragged Point was obliterated. Instead of arriving at San Simeon in time for sunset, we were there for lunch. There was just no point to hiking trails with breath-taking views . . . . of the gray-white billows.
I had reserved tours for the next morning and the staff were very understanding and switched our tickets to the next available tours that afternoon. We had to take the Upstairs Suites tour first, then the Grand Rooms tour. There are some (hundreds, at least) remarkable objets d’art, not to mention the ceilings, walls, mantels, etc. It was quite a treat and seemed to be a lot longer - and more interesting - than the Grand Rooms tour. Perhaps it was just more intense, but it was far and away the one we both preferred.
Then we checked into our room at Motel 6 (very comfortable) and drove to Cambria for a delicious dinner at Robin’s (thanks again to Kibblesmom for the recommendation).
Day 4 – Any thought of backtracking for a hike or two was dashed to bits as soon as I looked out the window. The dreaded marine layer had enveloped the entire coastal area. Gray, gray, gray. We went back to Cambria to get a closer, slower look at the charming homes and shops we had zipped past last night and at some of the 200-plus life-size figures all over town (Octoberfest celebrations). One wine-tasting and lunch at Main Street Grill (the best fries and onion rings on the West Coast), then east to wine country and more tastings. It was lots of fun to chat with folks at each of the wineries (both the employees and the other visitors) while sipping. We ended our day at the Adelaide Inn in Paso Robles – a real gem.
Thus ended our California adventure. The next morning we left for Las Vegas and Zion National Park (where we are now - spectacular . . . as always).
Many thanks to everyone here who provided suggestions and recommendations. We couldn’t have done it without you.