A couple weeks ago, we drove down to Big Sur for a weekend camping with a few of our closest friends. There were three couples coming from San Francisco, and we were meeting another couple who live in Southern California. A few months ago, Jeremy sent everyone an email to see if we'd be interested in a weekend camping in Big Sur. Of course Andrew and I were on board! He wanted to stay at Kirk Creek campground, which is small so getting reservations can be tricky. But Jeremy was able to book us the best spot, Site #9 with incredible ocean views. We've been looking forward to this weekend for months, and were excited for a fun weekend of activities and catching up with friends.
We left early Saturday morning and the drive down was beautiful. It was warm with clear blue skies, I couldn't believe the color of the water, it reminded me of our sailing trip to St. Vincent & The Grenadines in 2011. Since there is no cell service, we had a predetermined meeting time at Limekiln State Park. It was pretty close to our campground and had picnic tables and a short waterfall hike we could do before setting up camp in the afternoon.
We had almost perfect timing and the San Francisco crew and our friends from Southern California arrived minutes apart. We decided to eat the sandwiches we had packed and then head up to Limekiln Falls. I didn't realize we were going to hike so I was way unprepared with my attire (i.e. flip flops and jeans), but it ended up being fine. We had read poison oak was bad in the Spring, but I couldn't believe how much there was. I grew up around it, and thankfully have never gotten it, but we were all very careful. Since we had the dogs with us, we were a bit worried but it ended up being fine. There was actually a sign that said no dogs but we passed at least 5 other groups with dogs so you should be fine as long as you keep them on leash and clean up after them.
The trail was beautiful, surrounded by redwoods and ferns. There were a few stream crossings which was entertaining with both dogs. I was actually happy to have my rainbows on because I could easily take them off for the stream-crossing. The trail was quite busy, but the hike was easy and the view at the end was well worth getting your feet wet.
After our hike we headed for Kirk Creek Campground to set up. Our site was awesome, right on the water with a perfect tree for our hammocks. Unfortunately, the fog had settled in to create the typical Northern California grey coastal scene, but beautiful none the less. Once we had our tents and hammocks set up, we spent the rest of the afternoon and evening playing games, relaxing and hanging out by the campfire.
The next day we woke up to more grey skies but we didn't let that stop us. We had an amazing breakfast using our new grill our friends got us for a wedding gift. Then we headed for the beach. We went to Sand Dollar Beach because we heard it was a big sandy beach. Once we made it down to the water, we were greeted with a high tide and a very rocky beach. But in the distance, we could see a patch of sand. Ever since our friends wedding in Mexico, the boys love playing beach volleyball. Corrie had bought a net they could set up and spend the afternoon playing, so we weren't about to let a rocky beach, high tide, and cloudy day stop us! Once we made it to the sandy side of the beach, we knew it was worth the effort. The boys set up the volleyball net and the girls played Smash Ball, which is my new favorite. After a few hours, and many activities, the sun came out. The boys took that as an opportunity to go swimming, crazy! Since it was Sunday, The Elliotts and Lindsays had to leave to get back for work on Monday. But Andrew and I, as well as the Lockharts were staying one more night. We said our goodbyes and headed back to the campground.
Right as we got back to the campground, the sun decided to come out and we had the most glorious evening. Louis loved snoozing in the sun while we watched the whales go by. I am such a nerd when it comes to sea life and was so excited we saw them spouting. It was another relaxing evening sitting in the hammock, making dinner and visiting around the campfire.
We had a leisurely morning on Monday, enjoying the sunshine and watching more whales. Both of us had a long drive ahead of us so we got packed up after breakfast and were on our way. It was so fun to see Joy and Jeremy. They are expecting a baby girl in August and I am sooo excited to meet her. It was great to see them and see her cute little belly!
On our way home, Andrew and I made a few stops to take photos and see McWay Falls, then stopped for lunch at Nepenthe. I had the shrimp BLT which was so good, but Andrew got the pulled pork special and it was even better. It was quite pricey, but I knew we were partially paying for the view. McWay Falls was as beautiful as you would imagine. I am so happy we had such a clear day because it made the water that beautiful turquoise blue we had seen on our drive down. After lunch and our stop at the Falls, I was tired and ready to head home, so we didn't stop at Bixby Bridge. I guess we'll have to go back for another weekend trip....
Have you been to Big Sur? We want to go back and do more hiking, maybe a backpacking trip too. We also want to camp at Plaskett Creek sometime, it's right by Sand Dollar Beach and looks like a really nice campground. And I told Andrew for an anniversary sometime, I want to spend one night at a swanky hotel with an amazing view, like this or this :)
|View from Nepenthe|