Moonstone Beach – Cambria, California

Moonstone Beach – Cambria, California

Saturday Evening and Sunday Afternoon at the Pacific Ocean in Cambria.

THIS BLOG IS STILL UNDER CONSTRUCTION!

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Pacific Ocean View, Big Sur, California (not my pic)

We have combined the pics from previous blogs and added new pics into this one.
This Blog was just UPDATED April 9, 2017.

Hearst San Simeon California State Park owns and controls most of the waterfront property along the 20-mile segment of Highway 1 north of Cambria on the Central Coast as well as Hearst Castle and the surrounding land. There are thirteen different beautiful, uncrowded and remote “hidden gem” beaches in northern San Luis Obispo County and southern Monterey County between Cambria and Big Sur.

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Moonstone Beach in Cambria, California

Moonstone Beach is a California State Park and part of Hearst San Simeon State Park. It runs along Moonstone Beach Drive and parallels Highway 1 in Cambria. The shoreline is made up of brown sandy beaches and coves separated by rocky headlands. On the beach, there are a number of natural ocean tide pools filled with marine life, and in the park there are easy hiking trails and an abundance of natural flora and fauna.

NOTE: Dogs are allowed on-leash on the trails and the boardwalk, but not on the beach!

SATURDAY EVENING

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Marine Layer Rolling In Over Cambria and the Pacific Ocean on Saturday Evening

Moonstone Beach was the end of a long road trip from Ashland, Oregon. We left in the morning without a destination and arrived in Cambria at sunset. The marine layer and heavy fog had rolled in as we were coming down Highway 46 from the mountains, so there were gray skies and it was chilly outside the car when we reached the ocean.

NOTE: Read the previous Blogs about our Spring 2016 Oregon Roadtrip, Historic Cambria, the Vault Gallery and the Bluebird Inn in Cambria (see the links below)

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Sunset at Moonstone Beach in Cambria, California

We parked the car at the Beach next to the Moonstone Beach Boardwalk. The marine layer was over the ocean and there was only a thin line of orange on the horizon as the sun went down over the ocean, but it was really beautiful as we watched the sunset.

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Sunset at Moonstone Beach in Cambria, California

The one and a half mile long boardwalk runs the length of Moonstone Beach along the bluff top and walking it is a great way to experience the beauty of the Pacific Coastline.

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The Boardwalk at Moonstone Beach in Cambria, California

There is easy access to the sandy beach via stairs down from the bluffs and there are many wooden benches along the Boardwalk to just sit and enjoy the view.

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Moonstone Beach in Cambria, California

As the sun set, we called and found a room was available at the Bluebird Inn. We had a very nice dinner at Robin’s restaurant and went for drinks afterwards at the Cambria Pub and Mozzi’s Saloon and then stayed the night at the motel.

Read the Previous Blog! (RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW”)
Saturday Night at The Bluebird Inn Motel in Cambria 
http://wp.me/p3dhVM-3gi

NOTE: There is not much to do after 9pm in Cambria. There is no real nightlife, except for a few bars and restaurants that stay open late.

SUNDAY AFTERNOON

After a good night’s rest and the morning breakfast buffet at the Bluebird Inn, we spent the early part of the day walking around downtown Cambria exploring historical sites and visiting shops and galleries (Read our previous Blogs).

Read the Previous Blogs! (RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW”)
Sweet Offerings Confectionary in Cambria, California! http://wp.me/p3dhVM-3ik

It was still overcast, so we decided not to drive north to Big Sur. Instead, some time after noon, we walked back to the car at the motel and then drove down to Moonstone Beach and the Pacific Ocean.

Moonstone State Beach in Cambria, California

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Moonstone Beach in Cambria, California

SEAGULLS!

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Moonstone Beach in Cambria, California

CLICK ON ANY SMALL PIC TO SEE A LARGER PIC AND VIEW THE GALLERY!

 

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Moonstone Beach in Cambria, California

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Moonstone Beach – Parking Lot and Picnic Area

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SQUIRREL! “Hey, nice marmot!”
They Have No Fear! Please DO NOT feed the wildlife!

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SQUIRREL! No Fear! Please DO NOT feed the wildlife!

This little squirrel tried to “panhandle” us in the parking lot!
It came right up (not even 3 feet away) and posed for these pictures exhibiting little fear of people and obviously looking for some food from the tourists…
PLEASE DO NOT FEED THE WILDLIFE!

CLICK ON ANY SMALL PIC TO SEE A LARGER PIC AND VIEW THE GALLERY!

Squirrels are members of the family Sciuridae, consisting of small or medium-size rodents. The family includes tree squirrels, ground squirrels, chipmunks, marmots (including woodchucks), flying squirrels, and prairie dogs.

That word “squirrel” first specified in 1327, comes from the Anglo-Norman esquirel which is from the Old French escurel, the reflex of a Latin word sciurus. This Latin word was borrowed from the Ancient Greek word σκίουρος, skiouros, which means shadow-tailed, referring to the bushy appendage possessed by many of its members.

The California ground squirrel (Otospermophilus beecheyi), is a common and easily observed ground squirrel of the western United States and the Baja California Peninsula. “Beechey’s Marmot” (named after Frederick William Beechey, an early 19th-century British explorer and naval officer) is common in Oregon and California and its range has relatively recently extended into Washington and northwestern Nevada.

California ground squirrels live in burrows which they excavate themselves. Some burrows are occupied communally but each individual squirrel has its own entrance. They readily become tame in areas used by humans and quickly learn to take food left or offered by people. They spend most of their time within 82 feet of their burrow and rarely go further than 160 feet from it. The squirrel’s fur contains a mixture of gray, light brown and dusky hairs; the underside is lighter, buff or grayish yellow. The fur around the eyes is whitish and around the ears is black. Head and body are about 12 inches long and the bushy tail an additional 6 inches.

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Squirrel! No Fear! Please don’t feed the wildlife!

 

TRAVEL ALERT!
Highway 1 IS CLOSED! Pacific Coast Highway from Cambria to Big Sur!

 

TravelAlert-614x201

HIGHWAY 1 NEAR BIG SUR IS CLOSED DUE TO STORM DAMAGE!

There are currently temporary closures on Highway 1 after winter storms damaged the coastal road again. The highway north of Big Sur has reopened but a full closure due to landslides (Paul’s Slide) near the town of Lucia will continue for at least four to six more weeks. The highway continues to deteriorate at Mud Creek near the town of Gorda as slide activity continues. It is currently closed there and it is also closed at Ragged Point, 24 miles north of Cambria. They remain closed to travelers according to Caltrans as of April 4, 2017. Caltrans completed demolition on the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge just south of Big Sur Station on March 20 after the bridge failed in mid-February and is planning to build a replacement bridge. Nacimiento-Fergusson Road, the only road that cuts through the Santa Lucia Mountains from Highway 101 and allows access to Big Sur, reopened in late March.

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Big Creek Bridge and Cove – Big Sur, California (not my pic)

Moonstone Beach at Hearst San Simeon State Park
6216 Moonstone Beach Drive, Cambria, CA
Free parking along Moonstone Beach Drive and in the park parking lot.
NOTE: Bring a sweater or jacket! It can get cold, even in Summer.

Read the Previous Blogs!
(RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW”)
Master Blog! Spring Roadtrip 2016 to Ashland Oregon! http://wp.me/p3dhVM-35M
Seagulls! Moonstone Beach in Cambria http://wp.me/s3dhVM-seagulls
The Bluebird Inn Motel in Cambria 
http://wp.me/p3dhVM-3gi
Historic Downtown Cambria, California http://wp.me/p3dhVM-3yI
The Vault Gallery in Cambria, California http://wp.me/p3dhVM-4lQ
Sweet Offerings Confectionary in Cambria, California! http://wp.me/p3dhVM-3ik

Hearst Castle website: http://www.hearstcastle.org

All Photos copyright 2016 JoshWillTravel

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Pacific Ocean at Moonstone Beach in Cambria, California

 

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Moonstone Beach in Cambria, California


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Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Birthday Dinner at the “Old School” Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Serving the San Fernando Valley since 1947! This place is “Old School” 1950’s era dining at it’s finest and the restaurant’s atmosphere, decor and menu all follow this directive.

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

No valet parking here. Street parking is available, the meters run 8am-8pm everyday, except Sunday. Ready yourself for a “TIME WARP” dining experience!

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – Welcome to the Valley Inn!

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – Wall of Autographed Headshots!

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – Chick Hearn & John Wooden Memorabilia!

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – Tweety Bird (& the WB Animators)

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – Antique Machine!

The Saloon Bar (order a martini or classic cocktail):

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – The “Old School” Saloon Bar (have a cocktail!)

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – The “Old School” Saloon Bar (have a martini!)

There are two public dining rooms, the John Wooden Board Room and the Main Dining Room, and there’s a private dining room in the back available for small parties.

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – John Wooden & Main Dining Rooms

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – John Wooden Board Room (Dining Room)

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – Main Dining Room

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – Fine Wine!

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – Private Dining Room & Fine Wine Reserve

 

On The Menu: Fried calamari with marinara sauce, Boston clam chowder with soup crackers, Caesar salad, BBQ baby back ribs with wedge fries & coleslaw, bread & butter, a glass of red wine (Artesa Pinot Noir 2013), a coke and a hot fudge sundae for dessert.

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – Red Wine! Artesa Pinot Noir 2013

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – Fried Calamari with marinara sauce

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – Boston Clam Chowder

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – Caesar Salad

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – BBQ Baby Back Ribs w/Wedge Potatoes & Coleslaw

Dessert: Happy Birthday to me! A classic Hot Fudge Sundae!

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks – Hot Fudge Sundae

NOTE: The coffee machine was broken, so they could only offer us decaf…NO COFFEE! We were told they were having it fixed “tomorrow” but that didn’t help us at dinner.

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks

The food is good, not great. The atmosphere is good if you like the “retro” dining experience. It’s not a cheap meal, market price for lobster here was $39 per pound.

I would not order the ribs again (they were lacking seasoning and not very good), instead I would have steak and/or lobster.

THE SERVICE NEEDS WORK!!!!! Our server didn’t smile once and seemed totally overworked, which is impossible for a restaurant this size, it was early, and it wasn’t very busy. The service was slow and her attention to detail and our needs while dining was lacking (to put it nicely). There’s a regular crowd that eats and drinks here, and they seem to get better attention/service.

We had a fun party and ate a lot of food. It was a nice dinner, but could have been so much better! Good service and proper attention to the service makes a big difference!

I won’t patronize establishments with poor service where I’m treated as a 2nd class citizen, especially at their prices.

All photos copyright 2015 JoshWillTravel

Valley Inn Restaurant4557 Sherman Oaks Ave. Sherman Oaks 91403 (818)784-1163

Next time we’ll go back to Le Sanglier! Read the Blog> http://wp.me/p3dhVM-XM

 

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UPDATED November 25, 2018: Another Old School Steak Dinner at the Valley Inn!
We have been back and the experience was pretty much the same. We even sat in the same booth. It’s a big meal and a San Fernando Valley experience.
ON THE MENU: Ribeye steak (medium rare) with fries & veggies, fried calamari, salad with ranch dressing, bread & butter, a coke and a vanilla chocolate fudge sundae.
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21-APR-13: Western Town Oak Tree

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California

Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area

Western Town Oak Tree - Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town Oak Tree – Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

IT’S NATIONAL PARK WEEK!

National Parks that charge admission are FEE FREE on certain days of the year!
National Parks Free Entrance Days: http://www.nps.gov/findapark/feefreeparks.htm

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Return to Paramount Ranch – Agoura, California: Part 1 Western Town

Return to Paramount Ranch in Agoura, California:
Part 1 Western Town
Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area

NOTE: If you’ve been redirected here via a link from Agoura Renaissance Faire, please FOLLOW and LIKE this page and our facebook and Twitter pages.

See our other Blogs about the Faire and the Paramount Ranch for more pics! Use the SEARCH BOX at the top of the page and SEARCH: PARAMOUNT RANCH^^^^^^^^^

(Originally Published April 2013)

I’ve been meaning to do this for a long time: Take a little trip out to the Paramount Ranch in Agoura, the old site of the original Renaissance Pleasure Faire.

It was a beautiful day!  Not too hot, a nice breeze and some clouds, the weather was perfect for a nice afternoon hike and a little picnic lunch.

Here’s Part 1 – Western Town

Western Town, Paramount Ranch - Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town 8am to Sunset, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

In 1927, Paramount Studios purchased a 2,700-acre ranch on Medea Creek in the Santa Monica Mountains, now renamed Paramount Ranch Park and part of the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area.  The park is open 8am to Sunset and admission is FREE.

From the 101 Freeway, exit at Kanan Road

Kanan Road Exit - Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Kanan Road Exit – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Head for the beach, but turn at the first left, onto Cornell Road

Kanan Road and Cornell Road (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Kanan Road and Cornell Road – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Travel down Cornell Road

Cornell Road

Cornell Road – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Turn right at the entrance to Paramount Ranch Park

Paramount Ranch Park - Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Turn Right! Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Park by the Ranger Station compound

Paramount Ranch Park

Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Oak Tree by Western Town Gate, Paramount Ranch Park (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Oak Tree by Western Town Gate, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

There is still a Western Town at the location for visitors to tour which continues to be used for film and television filming, notably for the “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman” television series and the HBO series “Carnavale”.

Western Town, Paramount Ranch - Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch - Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch - Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park- Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch - Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch - Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch - Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

The Saloon, Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch - Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch - Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch - Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch - Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town

Miner’s Shack, Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town

Miner’s Shack, Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town

Oak Tree in the Corral, Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town

Oak Tree in the Corral, Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town

Meadow Gate, Western Town Meadow, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town Meadow

Oak Tree in the Western Town Meadow, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town Meadown

Western Town Meadow, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Western Town

Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

There is a nice shaded picnic area behind Western Town.

Picnic Area behind Western Town (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Picnic Area behind Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Picnic Area behind Western Town (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Picnic Area behind Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Picnic Area behind Western Town (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Picnic Area behind Western Town, Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

Picnic Lunch

Picnic Lunch: jalapeno jack cheese, wheat thins, baby carrots, strawberries, an apple, two chocolate chip cookies, fruit punch Gatorade and water.

All photos copyright 2013, 2014, 2016 and 2017 JoshWillTravel

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UPDATED MARCH 23, 2017 (Part 2 added): READ THE BLOG>
Return to Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California Part 2 – Hiking the Site