Day 5

Trip Start Nov 27, 2009
Trip End Dec 11, 2009

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Flag of United States  , California
Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The next morning, I woke up really early and left the Whale Watchers Inn while it was still foggy, in the hopes that there would not be many other cars on my drive through the curvy roads.  The result was a magical drive out of the Big Sur area.  It almost seemed like things were moving in slow motion, and I only saw one other car the whole time.  

After driving out of the Big Sur area, I saw a lighthouse, and pulled in to take a look.  The gate for the road to the lighthouse was locked, with a sign proclaiming that the public was only allowed to tour the lighthouse one day a week - Tuesdays at 9:45.  I looked at my watch - it was in fact Tuesday at 9:47. I was able to meet up with the tour group. 

From the lighthouse grounds, you could see a large group of elephant seals congregating on the beach below. 

Elephant seals come to California to mate.  While I was there, though, there were only male elephant seals getting ready for the female elephant seals, which they mainly do by laying around all day.  Eventually, they fight, but I did not see any violence.

These seals look like friends, but soon there will be fighting.

My money is on this elephant seal to win in the fights.

Elephant seals flip sand onto their backs to keep cool; it helps them block the sun.

After the elephant seals, I headed up to Pacific Grove, on the 101 rather than going back onto the scary coast road.  The 101 itself was pretty, with rolling types of hills.

My first night in Pacific Grove, I first stayed in the Butterfly Grove Inn, which was a clean but not fancy hotel that's main claim to fame is that monarch butterflies have chosen the trees in its parking lot as one of the places where they return every winter. Unfortunately, there weren't many butterflies in this particular location this year.

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marci and matt on

we love these seals.

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