January 24, 2012

The Start of the 1

California’s Route 1 starts, or stops depending on which way you drive it, in a sleepy area of northern Mendocino county known for its “trees.”  (I’ll give you a hint; some are big and red and the others small and green.)  An unassuming sign for Fort Bragg designates the turnoff from 1o1 onto one of the country’s most celebrated highways.  Shortly after sunrise,  Spencer and I pulled onto the 1 after spending a few days in Arcata and headed south for San Francisco.

Cutting through Mendocino, Sonoma and Marin Counties, the 1 wraps around cliffs and through small towns.  Despite looking similar to the Oregon Coast,  the Norcal  is culturally very different from its neighbor to the north.  If the quazi-monster truck is the vehicle of choice in the southern Oregon,  the 80’s bio diesel drinking Mercedes wagon gets the honks and waves in this neck of the woods.

Point Arena.

Two tone.

“It was a run by fruiting…”

Drop off.

The Mendocino Coast.



An old growth eucalyptus tree.


Tide pool.

Vultures in Marin County.

As we worked our way down the coast a hundred miles a day,  the weather warmed up and the rain subsided.  Slowly the days lengthened.  Later in the year I will head north,  but now it’s time to head south.

Here are some more links:

The Start of the 1 (Facebook),



  • January 24 , 2012

    every time you post i’m ready to pack the bags with my husband and daughter and just drive. someday soon.

  • January 24 , 2012

    do it. One of my fondest memories of my childhood was going on a road trip with my family in northern california in a rented rv for 3 weeks. we listened to the forrest gump sound track and explored the sierras. im sure your daughter will love it.


  • January 24 , 2012

    Love this! I grew up in Marin County, but my parents now live up at The Sea Ranch… these pictures all give me a feeling of homesickness (I now live in CO) in a comforting way… I really love that area, something special about it!

  • January 24 , 2012

    Sea Ranch is great. I love the norcal coast. its amazing. some day i hope to live there.

  • January 24 , 2012

    don’t forget Bolinas, an hour there adds a day to your life

  • January 25 , 2012

    Bolinas is amazing. i love it there.