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View Full Version : some clarification here... July Trip to DLR and Central CA & Help Needed!


PNO4TE
04-29-2007, 07:51 AM
Good morning! I am headed, on business, to the LA area in July. My DH will fly out to join me and we are planning a week of travel around the central part of the state, ending with two days at DLR.

I have been to CA numerous times, the first being 40 years ago in July with my family for a 6 week road trip of the perimeter of the USA, starting and ending in PA. It was an amazing time that I will never forget and I want to show him some of the things that we did on that trip. He has only been to CA once, and that was 8 years ago to DLR / Redondo Beach / LA and a drive from there to San Diego and back.

We are flying from Dulles into and out of Long Beach so that is our starting and stopping point, more or less. Here is what we have planned so far:

Day 1 - head to Sequoia and Kings Canyon with a stay at the Wuksachi Village Lodge.

Day 2 - Time at Sequoia and Kings Canyon and then off to Monterey, staying at the Best Western Monterey Inn.

Day 3 - Do the drive from Monterey to Paso Robles with a stay at the Paso Robles Inn. Visit with winemaking friends in the area.

Day 4 - Paso Robles to Santa Barbara, staying at the Inn by the Harbor.

Day 5 - Santa Barbara to DLR, staying at Disney's Grand Californian Hotel!

Day 6/7 - Disneyland!

Day 8 - head home :(

The route we are taking is pretty much set because of the things I want to show my DH. Are there any things we absolutely shouldn't miss on this trek? Are there any hotels / motels / inns that we have chosen that raise a red flag with any of you locals? Where are some great places to eat along the way? We like to try to find unique places, not necessarily where the tourists always go. What about Old Vienna Inn in Pismo Beach? The Mucky Duck in Monterey? Paso Robles Inn Steakhouse? Are Stuart Andersons's Steakhouses good? Any other suggestions? We would love your input!

Thanks in advance, fellow DISers! :goodvibes

Judy from Boise
05-03-2007, 07:25 PM
Wow, that first driving day will be long one ! I think your plan is sound if you really want to see all of those things. One thought would be skipping the tress this year, starting at Monterey, and adding a second day at DL :) .

PNO4TE
05-03-2007, 09:53 PM
Wow, that first driving day will be long one ! I think your plan is sound if you really want to see all of those things. One thought would be skipping the tress this year, starting at Monterey, and adding a second day at DL :) .

Thanks for responding, Judy.

The first day of driving will be the day my dh arrives from Virginia, but I will already have been in CA for 5 days and will pick him up at the airport and head out to Sequoia. I was thinking it was about a 6-7 hour drive. Am I wrong here?

As for adding another day at DL... we already have three planned. :goodvibes We will arrive on the 5th day and have all of the 6th and 7th day of our trip there since our flight does not leave Long Beach until almost midnight! Love those Red-eyes. ;)

Mary Jo
05-04-2007, 07:50 PM
The drive to Sequoia is more like 5.5-6 hours (at least that's how long it takes me to get to Lodgepole campground, which is right next to the Wuksachi Lodge.

I'd skip Kings Canyon, and concentrate on visiting the Giant Forest - the General Sherman tree and Crescent Meadow. You'll be driving towards Kings Canyon on your way to Monterey. I'm not sure how long it will take you to get to Monterey, but I'm thinking 4-5 hours from Sequoia.

PNO4TE
05-04-2007, 09:22 PM
The drive to Sequoia is more like 5.5-6 hours (at least that's how long it takes me to get to Lodgepole campground, which is right next to the Wuksachi Lodge.

I'd skip Kings Canyon, and concentrate on visiting the Giant Forest - the General Sherman tree and Crescent Meadow. You'll be driving towards Kings Canyon on your way to Monterey. I'm not sure how long it will take you to get to Monterey, but I'm thinking 4-5 hours from Sequoia.

Thanks, Mary Jo! The only visiting of Kings Canyon we planned on doing was the actual driving through it on the way from Sequoia to Monterey the second day.

Do you know anything about the shuttle that they are running within Sequoia Park? Sounds like a great way to move around the park without having to drive.

Your timeline for driving sounds about right from what I have figured too. The only day we have a long drive is the first, and I planned it that way specifically so my DH could sleep in the car for a bit, if necessary. I will already be on West Coast time and shouldn't mind the drive at all.

RangerPooh
05-05-2007, 01:20 AM
FYI- the General Sherman Tree is in Yosemite not Seq/Kings
If the shuttle is a free shuttle like in Yosemite than it should be pretty decent where you cna get out at your leisure and check out the sites and then hop onto the next bus that comes by. As I am not too fmailiar with Squoia/Kings Canyon I don't know if the lodge that you are staying at is in the park or outside of it. But if it was me I'd find out how far/long of a drive it is to see the specific sites that you are interested in seeing. As if it is just outside the aprk gates it might take and 1.5 hours each way to get to the destination.

In Monterey a nice area to check out is Pt. Lobos state park. It's down the highway a bit but it a nice area to check` out the rocky coastline. It has plent of hidden coves to hike down to. No swimming but great view of the ocean, waves, etc. Really beautiful on a clear day.

If you stop in Pismo check out F.W. MicKlintoc's (sp?), it's a really good steakhouse! Don't know what day of the week you'll be passing through San Luis Obispo but Thursday evenings are Farmers Market and they are fun (music, food).

If you ahve time on the Paso Robles day you could drive out to San Simion and tour Herst Castle.

PNO4TE
05-05-2007, 10:06 AM
FYI- the General Sherman Tree is in Yosemite not Seq/Kings
If the shuttle is a free shuttle like in Yosemite than it should be pretty decent where you cna get out at your leisure and check out the sites and then hop onto the next bus that comes by. As I am not too fmailiar with Squoia/Kings Canyon I don't know if the lodge that you are staying at is in the park or outside of it. But if it was me I'd find out how far/long of a drive it is to see the specific sites that you are interested in seeing. As if it is just outside the aprk gates it might take and 1.5 hours each way to get to the destination.

In Monterey a nice area to check out is Pt. Lobos state park. It's down the highway a bit but it a nice area to check` out the rocky coastline. It has plent of hidden coves to hike down to. No swimming but great view of the ocean, waves, etc. Really beautiful on a clear day.

If you stop in Pismo check out F.W. MicKlintoc's (sp?), it's a really good steakhouse! Don't know what day of the week you'll be passing through San Luis Obispo but Thursday evenings are Farmers Market and they are fun (music, food).

If you ahve time on the Paso Robles day you could drive out to San Simion and tour Herst Castle.

We are staying at the Wuksachi Lodge within Sequoia National Park and the National Park Service Website says it is located just 4 miles north of the General Sherman Tree... www.visitsequoia.com.

The other places you mentioned are also on our touring plan, so thanks for letting us know that they are worth stopping for. We will check out the steakhouse too! Thanks so much.

tinkryansmom
05-11-2007, 07:56 PM
I think your itinerary sounds great.

The lodging should be great. In Paso the Inn is a great steakhouse. The other restaurants I do not know sorry.

McClintocks is nice also just depends on where you are when you get hungry! There are plenty of great steaks to be had in California.:thumbsup2

In Santa Barbara we always enjoyed the Enterprise Fish Company - if you like seafood. Although to be truthful not sure it is still there. Brophy Bros. is real nice too. It is right at the marina.

Stuart Andersons are OK - in my opinion just another chain restaurant and nothing special.

Enjoy your trip!!

Mary Jo
05-12-2007, 01:15 AM
Thanks, Mary Jo! The only visiting of Kings Canyon we planned on doing was the actual driving through it on the way from Sequoia to Monterey the second day.

Do you know anything about the shuttle that they are running within Sequoia Park? Sounds like a great way to move around the park without having to drive.

Your timeline for driving sounds about right from what I have figured too. The only day we have a long drive is the first, and I planned it that way specifically so my DH could sleep in the car for a bit, if necessary. I will already be on West Coast time and shouldn't mind the drive at all.

We were there last summer and though I remember seeing something about a shuttle, I never saw it, and we chose to drive the various areas. If you like to hike, there is a little hike 1.7 miles, but steep, to the top of Little Baldy. To get to the trailhead, drive a little past Dorst campground, and you'll come up to it - but only if you have time. Since you're short on time, I really recommend going to Crescent Meadow & hiking (mild hike) to another meadow that has a log called Tharpes Log. A mountain man in the 1800's converted this log into a house (chimney & all), and lived there for 20 summers. It's a beautiful walk. We've seen deer and bears there when hiking.

FYI- the General Sherman Tree is in Yosemite not Seq/Kings
If the shuttle is a free shuttle like in Yosemite than it should be pretty decent where you cna get out at your leisure and check out the sites and then hop onto the next bus that comes by. As I am not too fmailiar with Squoia/Kings Canyon I don't know if the lodge that you are staying at is in the park or outside of it. But if it was me I'd find out how far/long of a drive it is to see the specific sites that you are interested in seeing. As if it is just outside the aprk gates it might take and 1.5 hours each way to get to the destination.

The General Sherman Tree is the largest living thing in the world, and is in the area called the Giant Forest in Sequoia, not Yosemite.

Part of my trip report that includes a picture of the General Sherman (http://www.maryjomellado.com/Camping_2002/2002_sequoia_10.htm)

http://www.maryjomellado.com/Camping_2002/182generalshermanstats.jpg

http://www.maryjomellado.com/Camping_2002/183generalshermankids2.jpg

In Yosemite, there is the Mariposa Grove that had the famouse Wawona Tunnel Tree (fell in Spring 1969). The famous tree there now is called the Grizzly Giant, and is one of the oldest sequoias, if not the oldest.

http://www.tomsheck.com/thumbs20792.jpg



We are staying at the Wuksachi Lodge within Sequoia National Park and the National Park Service Website says it is located just 4 miles north of the General Sherman Tree... www.visitsequoia.com.

Right. Just a reminder, though, that these are windy roads, so four miles will still take you more time than if you were in the city.

Make sure you gas up right before your last leg up the mountain. I think there is a gas station in a little town called Lemon Cove (something like that). Before that is Three Rivers, and you can gas up there, too.

PNO4TE
05-12-2007, 05:26 PM
Thanks to everyone for the continuing great advice and information! I am writing it all down and will let you know how much we enjoyed the trip when we return. :)

OurDogCisco
05-14-2007, 01:32 AM
In Monterrey I like eating at the Fish Wife. It is actually in Pacific Grove which is right next o Monterrey. Sounds like a nice trip.

KelsiesMommy
06-05-2007, 01:34 AM
If you can detour to San Luis Obispo on your way to Paso Robles, the Apple Farm restaurant is AMAZING, if you can do breakfast there!

PNO4TE
06-05-2007, 05:51 AM
In Monterrey I like eating at the Fish Wife. It is actually in Pacific Grove which is right next o Monterrey. Sounds like a nice trip.

If you can detour to San Luis Obispo on your way to Paso Robles, the Apple Farm restaurant is AMAZING, if you can do breakfast there!

Those both sound good so Ihave added them to my list.

Does anyone know anything about The Mucky Duck in Monterey or The Old Vienna Restaurant in Pismo Beach. My DH has been looking around the Tour Books and found those two. The first one caught his eye for some reason (maybe the name :confused3) and the second one because he LOVES German and Austrian food.

Disneyglobegirl
06-09-2007, 11:16 PM
We use to live in Paso and were just back for a visit last year. Enjoy the wineries. There are many good ones in the area. They also have a variety of restaurants. They do have a McClintocks in Paso and there is AJ Spurs in Templeton. Both are great. Enjoy your trip:)

http://www.mclintocks.com/locations/pasorobles.asp

http://www.ajspurs.com/TEMPLETON.html

PNO4TE
06-10-2007, 12:31 PM
We use to live in Paso and were just back for a visit last year. Enjoy the wineries. There are many good ones in the area. They also have a variety of restaurants. They do have a McClintocks in Paso and there is AJ Spurs in Templeton. Both are great. Enjoy your trip:)

http://www.mclintocks.com/locations/pasorobles.asp

http://www.ajspurs.com/TEMPLETON.html

Those both look like fun! And we will need food in our tummies as the main reason we are headed to Paso Robles is that I have a friend who is a winemaker at the Martin & Weyrich and York Mountain Vineyards there. Thanks for the tips. :)

Disneyglobegirl
06-10-2007, 01:28 PM
Those both look like fun! And we will need food in our tummies as the main reason we are headed to Paso Robles is that I have a friend who is a winemaker at the Martin & Weyrich and York Mountain Vineyards there. Thanks for the tips. :)

We love Martin & Weyrich and York Mountain!! We went to both while we were back. You will have a great time tasting and enjoying the wines. Martin has some great reds. We still have a couple bottles left of their reserve Zinfandel that we brought back from our trip last summer. We sure miss living there and enjoying all the wine events. Just be prepared it will be pretty hot during the day in Paso that time of year. But it will cool off tremendously in the evening!!So dress cool in the day but you might want to bring a sweater for the evening.
Have fun!!

tinkermell
06-20-2007, 09:57 PM
If you are in Pismo Beach at all on your way down....be sure and go to Splash Cafe!!! Ask anybody for directions. :cool1: It is definately the place to go!! Very California beachy and fun!!! Oh and don't be alarmed by the line outside the door!:eek: :laughing: It goes pretty fast! And down the street towards the pier, is Hot Licks, featured on the Travel Channel for their candy with bugs in them. :eek: And then up the street is the wonderful cinnamon roll place. Yummy!!!! And then after that if you have time, go the State Park and take your car for a drive on the beach. One of the very few beaches in the US, that allows you to do it!!!
Oh, and North of Pismo, just below San Simeon is the sea lion harem!!!! Very interesting to see so many sea lions wallowing around on the beach!!! :goodvibes

michelle1
12-04-2007, 03:16 PM
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