Mink Machine

California dreamin' - Driving down the Highway 1

From San Francisco to Los Angeles along Highway 1. Then moving on to San Diego, Las Vegas and Grand Canyon.

  • Star spangled banner

    This is a series of photos taken on a 1000+ mile road trip on Highway One from San Francisco to Los Angeles to San Diego and finally across the Nevada desert to Las Vegas.

    [Banner in San Luis Obispo]

  • A view to a kill

    This looks like a good place to start.

    [Golden Gate bridge, San Francisco]

  • A view to a kill

    And the travel company was excellent!

    [Emelie and some bridge we found in San Francisco]

  • Lead by my Oakley's

    'It's 106 miles to Chicago, we've got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses.'
    -Elwood, The Blues Brothers

    [Reine setting the direction south]

  • A view to a kill

    It was almost impossible not to start humming on 'Are you going to San Francisco' by Scott McKenzie.

    [Emelie overlooking San Francisco bay with Alcatraz island to the left]

  • A daydream in blue

    The city looks so peaceful from here.

    [San Francisco bay]

  • Beneath the red arches

    Two years later it's time to cross the Golden Gate again, but this time we're heading south.

    [San Francisco]

  • Cable guy

    A cable car going up the steep California Street. The speed is regulated by pulling a large lever that makes the car hook into (or drop) the chain that rolls in the tracks and pulls the car.

    [San Francisco]

  • Pier pressure

    Every trip to San Francisco must include a visit to the moody sea lions at Pier 39. Even from a distance their noises are deafening.

    [Reine at Pier 41, San Francisco]

  • Hello there

    Going south.

    [Emelie in Montara]

  • Follow the yellow line

    Driving across the territory of Arnold the Governator.

    [Highway One]

  • Wazzup

    Not the best beach, but it's a start. California contains about 1000 miles of beaches that include flat, sandy expanses or rocky shores.

    [Reine on yet another beach along Highway 1]

  • Bridge over troubled country

    There are signs along the highway that says 'Fine $1000 for littering'. I can understand why.

    [Bixby Creek Bridge on Highway One]

  • The other Rocky

    This beautiful bridge was build in 1932. It is often mistaken for the better-known and larger Bixby Creek Bridge.

    [Rocky Creek Bridge]

  • Seaside

    Arriving in the cozy town of Monterey. It is well known for its excellent aquarium where the sea otters are particularly cute. Later the same evening we stood on the rooftop seen straight ahead and saw wild otters swimming in the bay.

    [Monterey]

  • Got the blues

    One of the fantastic exhibits is this stunning one-million-gallon tank, home to the world's largest community of open-ocean animals including giant bluefin tuna, hammerhead sharks and huge sea turtles.

    [Monterey Aquarium]

  • Roundup

    This is the largest permanent collection of jellyfish species in the United States, beautifully lit in a dark room.

    [Monterey Aquarium]

  • Splash

    Arriving in the beautiful city of Carmel, where Clint Eastwood used to be mayor. As our feet touched the fine-grained sand, we instantly knew why.

    [Carmel]

  • Curves

    The future is just around the corner.

    [Highway One]

  • Waves of the west

    Not even Till Lindemann would swim here.

    [Emelie and the Pacific Ocean]

  • Smile and wave

    The restrained smile could be hiding a faulty hand-brake and a dent in the front.

    [Reine at Highway One]

  • Kodak moment

    I wish there were more roads like this back home.

    [Emelie at Highway One]

  • Retrospective

    Objects in mirror are closer than they appear, as car manufactures tend to write everywhere.

    [Pacific ocean along Highway One]

  • Wax on

    Would you let this man drive your car?

    [Reine doing the infamous crane kick along Highway One]

  • The ancients

    The Hearst Castle is located close to San Simeon, situated on a hill overlooking the Pacific Ocean. This palatial estate of newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst contains 165 rooms and countless expensive items including a papal archway transported from Rome. This picturesque swimming pool is surrounded by greek and roman ruins.

    [The Neptune Pool at Hearst Castle, San Simeon]

  • Stately living

    The view of the Pacific is adequate for your morning coffee. The gardens of the estate are littered with priceless sculptures, including 19th dynasty egyptian statues.

    [View from Hearst Castle, San Simeon]

  • Morning dip

    Another good place for a swim is the indoor roman pool. It is styled after ancient roman baths. The room is decorated from ceiling to floor with square mosaic tiles, where some of the tiles contains fused gold adding to the shimmering light in there.

    [The Roman Pool at Hearst Castle, San Simeon]

  • One

    Seems like we're on the right track.

    [Highway One]

  • Smørrebrød

    This is the charming Danish village located in the Santa Barbara County. Much of the movie Sideways was filmed here. The buildings and bakeries follow traditional Danish styles.

    [Solvang]

  • I see you

    Barad-dur! We found it!

    [Emelie at Highway One]

  • Mein teil

    Back home we adopt children and rain forests. In America, they adopt highways.

    [Adopt-a-highway, Malibu]

  • Pitstop

    [Emelie and the Pacific Ocean]

  • LA is my lady

    Arriving in LA! At least the road is a lot wider than the coastal highway, but unfortunately there are a zillion other cars in the eight lines of traffic.

    [Los Angeles skyline]

  • Insanity

    Driving in LA is a refreshing experience, better than double espressos.

    [Los Angeles freeway]

  • Crash and burn

    I have a distinct feeling that our car rental agency won't like this image at all. This is from the set of War of the worlds, actually located next to the house on the hill where Norman Bates' mother lived in the movie Psycho.

    [Universal Studios in Universal City]

  • The sign

    Yes, so I am a movie buff. Shoot me, but I just had to take this picture.

    [The Hollywood sign near the top of Mount Lee in Los Angeles]

  • Dead man walking

    An ordinary sight on the streets of LA.

    [Walk of Fame at Hollywood Boulevard, Los Angeles]

  • Frankie goes to Hollywood

    Alpha team in position.

    [Emelie on the roof of the Kodak Theatre, the home of the Oscar's ceremony in Los Angeles]

  • Lady in red

    Home of Hasselhoff and the other baywatchers.

    [Santa Monica beach, Los Angeles]

  • Jumping jack flash

    SeaWorld's main attraction is the killer whale Shamu, who likes to lift young women into the air just like this. Just make sure to stay away from the splash zone!

    [Seaworld, San Diego]

  • Not Moby

    There are not many people who surf on killer whales for a living.

    [Seaworld, San Diego]

  • Yeeargh

    The sea lions are not as friendly as they look.

    [Seaworld, San Diego]

  • Smile and wave boys

    This penguin studied us thoroughly for a while, and I came to think of the penguin squad in the Madagascar movie.

    [Seaworld, San Diego]

  • Desolace

    Entering the desert.

    [Interstate 15]

  • Desolace

    We can't stop here, this is bat country!

    [Interstate 15]

  • Desolace

    After a week in LA it's refreshing to see mountains instead of McDonalds signs. The smog is fading away along with the memory of eight-lane freeways.

    [Interstate 15]

  • The road to Zzyzx

    At first I thought it was a hallucination, but this is a 4 1/2-mile dirt road leading from Interstate 15 to Zzyzx Springs.

    [Interstate 15]

  • Desolace

    Not a good place for gas stops.

    [Mojave desert]

  • Viva Las Vegas

    The strip section of Las Vegas Boulevard is the active part of Las Vegas, crammed with hotels and casinos. You don't often see the Brooklyn Bridge in the same photo as the Eiffel tower, but here it is. In between the fake skyscrapers to the left there is a fierce rollercoaster. The scary part of it was the fact that it was so old we feared it might fall apart any second.

    [The strip, Las Vegas]

  • Room with a view

    This was actually the view from our hotel room window. The green thing is the MGM, and beyond it dawn on the horizon where the desert begins.

    [Excalibur hotel, Las Vegas]

  • Water dance

    The daylight version of the famous water show is also excellent.

    [Emelie at the Bellagio fountain, Las Vegas]

  • Bring on the gondola

    The lovely exterior of the Venetian, with the Mirage volcano a bit away.

    [Las Vegas]

  • Bring on the gondola

    The interior is not bad either. This indoor setting beats most of the outdoor settings I've seen in a while.

    [The Grand Canal inside the Venetian, Las Vegas]

  • Bring on the gondola

    No city replica is complete without an indoor square, with an opera singer on the balcony to the left.

    [St. Mark’s Square at the Venetian, Las Vegas]

  • Rock of age

    Finally reaching the end of the journey. Time for a Evel Knievel trick! Notice the people on the left.

    [Grand Canyon, Arizona]

  • Rock of age

    A bit tired and dusty, but quite happy with the view.

    [Reine at Grand Canyon, Arizona]

  • Rock of age

    [Grand Canyon, Arizona]

Reine

About

Reine is a web developer who enjoys caffeine-fueled urban traveling. More...

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