Monterey County

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March 7th 2018
Published: March 9th 2018
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The Lone CypressThe Lone CypressThe Lone Cypress

This is supposedly one of the most photographed trees in the world...I don't know about that, but it an iconic scene along 17-Mile Drive.
Monterey sits on one of the most beautiful stretches along the California coast and started as the capital under Spanish, Mexican, and US Military rule. It was named Monterey Bay by the Spanish explorer Sebastian Vizcaino in 1602 and fortified by Spain in 1768, beginning the military's major role in the city's history. The US first mistakenly raised its flag over Monterey in 1842, when a US warship under Admiral Jones thought war had been declared with Mexico and took control of the Presidio for a day. Once the accident was realized, the US apologized and the ship sailed away. We officially raised the US Flag over Monterey in 1846 after U.S. Congress declared war following a Mexican skirmish with U.S. troops in Texas. To establish our permanent presence, in 1847 the US started construction of the Fort of several names (named after various Admirals/Generals) Forts Mervine, Stockton, Halleck, Savannah, before eventually settling on Fort Ord, which became the largest military installation on the West Coast. The fort occupied an area roughly the size of San Francisco and contained some prime beach-front real estate. The 1990s real estate market drove the cost of living and property values too high for the military and led to Congress' recommending the base for closure in 1991. Today many of Fort Ord's buildings still lie abandoned and covered in graffiti, but the massive sand dunes along CA 1 were transferred to the California State Parks for everyone to enjoy.

Monterey is now the most popular tourist destination on CA's central coast, in part due to John Steinbeck's Cannery Row novel about a cast of characters on Ocean View Ave; later renamed Cannery Row to take advantage of the best selling book and movie. The street of long-closed sardine canneries hosts a tourist oriented row of upscale restaurants, shops, and a world class aquarium (with world-class cost of entry $50). We passed on the $100.

In addition to incredible vistas, the area hosts 20 golf courses (to include Pebble Beach) and the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. For $10.25 you can enter an exclusive neighborhood's private 17 Mile Drive to enjoy Big Sur's rocky coast, watch seals/otters, or take photographs of world-famous points of interest of like Lone Cypress and Pebble Beach.

It's easy to see why the Spanish chose Monterey to establish their first Presidio in California. Tomorrow we travel from this iconic
Dunes in Fort Ord State ParkDunes in Fort Ord State ParkDunes in Fort Ord State Park

Just a few miles away from the Big Sur rocky scenery lies these massive sand dunes.
coastal town to one of the nation's most iconic National Parks, Yosemite.

Additional photos below
Photos: 29, Displayed: 23


Seals Off Joe's PointSeals Off Joe's Point
Seals Off Joe's Point

Just beyond the rocks there are several Harbor Seals swimming.
Tee BoxTee Box
Tee Box

This picture goes with the next two. This box is nestled in the rocks maybe 80 yards back from a par 3.
Normal Folks tee boxNormal Folks tee box
Normal Folks tee box

Don't want to drive too far on this Cyprus Point hole or you be in the ocean.
Little BeggarsLittle Beggars
Little Beggars

These little squirrels are super friendly. There are sign everywhere saying don't feed the animals, someone must be because they come right up to you.
Bird Rock PointBird Rock Point
Bird Rock Point

So named for the birds that occupy it along 17 Mile Dr
Warning along 17 Mile DrWarning along 17 Mile Dr
Warning along 17 Mile Dr

Maybe that's why some on the home owners insurance exceeds $2000 a month. I looked at prices on Zillow, none in the neighborhood less than $1M, most 2 digit millions, $65K year taxes, $2K month insurance, total payment/interest $65,000 a month. Guess we won't be buying into this neighborhood.
Beach Along DunesBeach Along Dunes
Beach Along Dunes

The surf is so dangerous even wading is prohibited. It drops off immediately at the waters edge and the waves swirl about. Doesn't keep the surfers away though.
Amazing Colors on DunesAmazing Colors on Dunes
Amazing Colors on Dunes

Succulents cover the dunes (most are a invasive species). Red, green, and orange petals along with flowers provide the color.

9th March 2018

I think all the graffiti makes you wonder just how "Abandoned" the buildings are. Too bad such prime real estate is being wasted. Makes me want to read the book Cannery Row. Did you read it?
9th March 2018

Monterey Co
I think the buildings are occupied on and off by homeless. They're starting to develop it, but the post was huge, like Fort Bragg.
9th March 2018

I loved it out there, so beautiful you saw much more than we did, beautiful
10th March 2018

Monterey Co
It is an amazing place and we enjoyed our time here. I wanted to see a couple more points of interest while there, but ran out of time and energy. I try to limit what I do on the day before we leave so I'm fresh on the road.

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