Day 1 San Clemente to Carpinteria
Wow. It was really hard to overcome the lack of inertia. So many things go through your head when preparing for something like this. All fear-based. I am glad I took the time to do the floorboards, and I also had a little accelerator pedal funk that I fixed Wednesday morning. It was sticking and turned out the pedal was bent. I guess 40 years of drag racing will do that. Ha.
Leaving home was bittersweet. But once I was on the road, and got on the highway, I started to feel it. Cranked up some Wolfmother on the stereo. Slow in the right lane. As I was hitting some traffic near LAX, it dawned on me that Wolfmother performed at the Deus Ex Machina Temple in Bali. And they have a shop in Venice. And traffic was shitty. So there was my first stop.
And it was everything I dreamed it would be. Amazing custom bikes. Great coffee. A total hipster hangout. OK, maybe I don’t dream of hipsters. I am hip but I’m not a hipster sung to the tune of All These Things That I’ve Done by The Killers. I picked up a Hat and a T-Shirt and talked to them about a Paskowitz art show. I’ll follow-up with their manager.
This little detour actually changed my route. I was planning on taking the 101 all the way to Ventura to save some time, but my late departure and stop meant traffic had built. And I didn’t want to have the Bus sitting in traffic. So I decided to head to Santa Monica and take PCH through Malibu. So glad I did.
The drive was so much more pleasant. And cool. Some of the houses in Malibu are fucking ridiculous. I think I saw Brad Pit. Maybe not.
As I was heading out of Malibu I rounded a bend in the road and saw an amazing wave peeling down a cove. The ocean had been flat all the way so far. I pulled over and took a stroll into Leo Carillo State Park.
The wave breaks right over the rock, with the takeoff point coming perilously close to barnacle covered boulders. The bold are rewarded with a peeling right perfect for nose riding that dumps you off into a rocky bay. I cashed in my rewards twice as the sun began to set. Out in the lineup I chatted with Glen Jr, who told me his pops lives in Pismo Beach, and would be happy to let me crash at his place. But he rode one in before we could exchange info.
On the way north, I rounded a corner and was treated to this amazing sunset
I pulled into Carpinteria State Beach hoping I could find a spot to camp. On the way in I spied several good candidates for street camping: an auto repair shop, a school parking lot with several cars left overnight, and plenty of parking spots on the neighborhood streets. But this always comes with a risk of an abrupt tap on the window from a curious police officer, which can really ruin a good nights sleep.
The park ranger told me he had three spots open. I took one and thanked the universe for providing me a good spot on my first night. As I move further north, there will be plenty of options for free campsites. Tonight I paid the fee.