Day 42 Mon 7/3. Monterey. 42 km cycling.

Up before dawn for a first breakfast on the beach.  Rain had stopped but the wind was more than making up for it. Sunrise was a fizzer so back to the room to warm up and re-emerged mid morning – sunny and slightly warmer but VERY windy.  Wandered down town and after crepes and coffee hired a bike for a few hours. There’s a fantastic bike trail right through town and followed this up through the back of Cannery Row and then along the road through Pacific Grove and out to 17-Mile Drive.

Now I’ve steadfastly refused to pay money to drive this road in the past but bikes are free so road several kms out to Bird Rock (which was actually covered by more sea lions than birds) and turned back.  Wind was almost strong enough to blow you over at times but that made the surf pretty impressive.  Very attractive countryside but don’t know whether its any better than Asimolar Beach which you can drive around for free.  As well as the sea lions saw some harbour seals, ground squirrels and lots of birds including a few turkey buzzards.

After dropping the bike off had a very late lunch / very early dinner then wandered down to the wharf for the afternoon coffee.  Wandering around the wharf saw a few seals in the water but there was a bleating cry coming from the water that didn’t sound seal-like.  Finally spotted an otter – couldn’t pick the shape at first as it was on its back with a young one sitting on its chest.  Over the next few minutes saw half a dozen of them – with the bleating one swimming all around the harbour never letting up with the noise.  Very exciting.

Wind had finally died down quite a bit and while no great sunset a very pleasant walk back along the beach to the motel and the impossible final packing for the trip home.

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