Afraid of Heights? - Route 1 from San Simeon to Santa Cruz

Discussion in 'California & the West' started by xipetotec, Mar 8, 2011.

  1. xipetotec

    xipetotec DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Messages:
    1,634
    So we just got back from our first California adventure!
    Hollywood
    Universal Hollywood
    DisneyLand
    Drive up the 1, stop in San Simeon
    Drive up to San Jose - Winchester House
    San Francisco.

    It was on this trip that I realized who in our party of 8 was afraid of heights. Suffice it to say there was a moderate amount of white knuckles and panic while driving up route 1. It was also foggy, so it looked like the end of the world up there. Pretty though.
     
  2. Avatar

    Google AdSense Guest Advertisement


    to hide this advert.
  3. GrandBob

    GrandBob Grand events should not go unnoticed

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2007
    Messages:
    2,090
    Uh yeah, probably a good thing to ask of your travel party beforehand :rotfl: Sorry you weren't properly warned. Hwy 1 down the Big Sur coast is my favorite drive in the world. It's such a privilege to live so close to it!

    -Bob
     
  4. xipetotec

    xipetotec DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Messages:
    1,634
    It's okay, they made it through alive ;) and I, for one, am glad to have been able to see it.
     
  5. Danibelle

    Danibelle DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2009
    Messages:
    1,308
    It's a little less scary going north! Unless there is a spot where the road is worn away! Or a boulder has fallen into the road! Seriously, this has happened.:scared1:
     
  6. xipetotec

    xipetotec DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Messages:
    1,634
    Actually, it DID indeed! we were driving along, and sure enough, there was a boulder in the road. I think if we had gone south, the folks I mentioned might have died right there.
     
  7. yupikgal

    yupikgal DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2007
    Messages:
    795
    Ok I read the title and got scared! Yes I'm afraid of heights, we're taking Amtrak from Anaheim to San Luis Obispo, and then spending a couple of nights there, the day after we get there we're renting a car and driving up to San Simeon. Is this the area you are refering to that is scary? I don't mind driving along narrow roads, as long as it's not so close you can see straight down!!
     
  8. xipetotec

    xipetotec DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Messages:
    1,634
    Nah, if you're only going as far as San Simeon, you should be fine. This was further north between San Simeon and Santa Cruz.
     
  9. yupikgal

    yupikgal DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2007
    Messages:
    795
    Oh good, thanks! Where is Cambria, is it close to San Simeon? I've heard it's a great little town..
     
  10. xipetotec

    xipetotec DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Messages:
    1,634
    It's right before you hit San Simeon. We didn't stop in, but have a picture of the sign cause we have a friend who has that as a first name :)
     
  11. Marilynbn

    Marilynbn I LOVE DISNEY! DIS member since 1999

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2005
    Messages:
    267
    You can also take hwy 101 to get to these places. The coastal route is gorgeous though but more hair raising going south for sure!

    ~Marilyn
     
  12. mamacatnv

    mamacatnv That be a Mum Y'all - a Texas Mum

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Messages:
    9,971
    One of the few times that being stuck behind the slow poke RV is not such a bad thing.
    Southbound is way worse than North bound
     
  13. Muddy Rivers

    Muddy Rivers Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Messages:
    455
    How scary is the drive southbound from San Francisco to Big Sur? Or is it worse south of Big Sur down the coast?
     
  14. mamacatnv

    mamacatnv That be a Mum Y'all - a Texas Mum

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Messages:
    9,971
    San Fran to Big Sur is a pleasant drive.
    Big Sur to San Simeon is gorgeous but (its been many many years so if it has changed I am unaware) single undivided lanes, on the edge of the cliffs, twisty & windy
     
  15. Muddy Rivers

    Muddy Rivers Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Messages:
    455
    Thank you for your advice. We plan on following the coast from San Francisco to Big Sur then take Interstate 5 down to Anaheim to save some time. Does anyone have a better way to get to Anaheim from Big Sur/Monterey area?
     
  16. GrandBob

    GrandBob Grand events should not go unnoticed

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2007
    Messages:
    2,090
    OK, but you're gonna miss the best scenery that way!

    Your last chance to get off highway 1 before the Big Sur coast is at Monterey. Take CA 68 west to Salinas, then US 101 south all the way down to LA. Beware of the speed trap at King City; slow down to the limit for 5 miles before and 5 miles after King City. Other than that, you're golden.

    For a slightly faster, and certainly more boring, route, assuming you're coming down Highway 1 from SF to Santa Cruz, you can try the following. Exit 1 at the Main St Watsonville exit (CA 152). Follow it through town (notice the beautiful historic Catholic church on your right). When you're almost out of town, turn left on CA 129 (Burger King, just before the bridge). Take 129 about 10 miles to US 101. Go south on 101 for just a couple of miles. Exit on CA 156 east. Follow the 156 bypass around Hollister (i.e., don't go into Hollister, unless you're curious about the town where The Wild Ones with Marlon Brando was shot). 156 ends when it dumps into CA 152. Continue east on CA 152 over Pacheco pass. A few miles on the other side of the pass, you can pick up Interstate 5 south, which you'll take all the way to DLR.

    This is all my neck of the woods. It's actually easier than it sounds. Or you can rely on your GPS ;)

    HTH,
    Bob
     
  17. mamacatnv

    mamacatnv That be a Mum Y'all - a Texas Mum

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Messages:
    9,971
    Ahhhh the infamous Pachecho Pass - formerly known as Blood Alley. That was a nasty stretch of road back in the day. DH and I used to drive from Los Angeles to Morgan Hill/San Jose 2-3 x's a month. This was 20-25 years ago. We took just about every route there is ;) Hwy 152 always included a stop at Casa De Fruita for some weird exotic fruit wine and some sort of snack!
    For years the state was working on widening that road to 2 lanes with dividers, did they ever finish it? Once we moved to Nevada we no longer came up from the South and I haven't been over Pachecho in years.
     
  18. GrandBob

    GrandBob Grand events should not go unnoticed

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2007
    Messages:
    2,090
    Yep, it's now 4 lane, mostly divided, all the way from the 156-152 junction to I-5. Although it's a mountain pass, it's now a very easy road to travel. They even built a fly-over intersection at 156 & 152. Before that, 152 east from Gilroy used to back up quite a ways, while people yielded to left turns for westbound traffic. The new fly-over is wonderful, and is the crowning touch to making the road safe and easy.

    Blood Alley, huh? I thought that term was reserved for the portion of Monterey Highway from Morgan Hill to San Jose, in the old days, when it served as US 101 before the freeway portion of 101 was complete.

    -Bob
     
  19. mamacatnv

    mamacatnv That be a Mum Y'all - a Texas Mum

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Messages:
    9,971
    After California's population started booming in the 1950s, Pacheco Pass's traffic steadily increased. So did traffic speeds. And so did the accidents and death count. By the 1970s, truckers began calling the pass "Blood Alley" and "The Ho Chi Minh Trail" because of its notoriously risky reputation. Among the famous fatalities are the elderly heirs to the Gallo Winery fortune. George Dexter, the designer of McDonald's "golden arches" restaurant symbol also died in a traffic accident here. As the death count rose, everyone knew something must be done to make the road safer.Courtesy of the Gilroy Dispatch
    For the complete article: http://www.gilroydispatch.com/lifestyles/161683-the-history-of-pacheco-pass

    Bob, I too remember when the section you are referring to was also deemed blood alley. I do think if I remember correctly the only way to get to HWY 152 was via Monterey Road and thus it was all coined the same. Back when DS and I used to travel over Pachecho, there used to be a large sign on the East Bound side that stated the number of fatal accidents that had occurred. It used to creep me out since we traveled it often and would see the numbers periodically changed
     
  20. GrandBob

    GrandBob Grand events should not go unnoticed

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2007
    Messages:
    2,090
    Cool article. Thanks!

    -Bob
     
  21. Muddy Rivers

    Muddy Rivers Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Messages:
    455
    Bob,

    Thanks sooo much for such details. It is exactly what I'm looking for. I really appreciate it. :)
     

Share This Page