Happy Independence Day! I decided to celebrate by waking up and driving to catch a sunrise in Half Moon Bay. I know the sun will rise from the landside, since it rises in the East, but I still thought it would be great to drive to see a morning out on the beaches.
Driving west on Highway 92 from the San Mateo Bridge towards Half Moon Bay, you move quickly past some urban metropolises before zooming towards the wooded mountains dividing quiet rural no-movie theatres Half Moon Bay from busy bustling and booming San Mateo County. But Half Moon Bay is charming.
On a side note: (Be careful of local gangbanger wannabes though. My friends and I got jumped here once a few years ago by some local teenagers looking for a fight, but the police went after them and got them after we went to file a report).
At the very end of Highway 92, there’s a Burger King that you can stock up on food supplies before hitting the beaches along route 1. It’s always foggy though, especially now in the summer.
On a side note: the science reason it’s always foggy and windy is that as the land east of the Bay Area (i.e. East Bay, Oakland, Richmond, Hayward, the Bay water itself) gets heated up, the hot air rises, creating a vacuum where the air used to be. Meanwhile, water absorbs heat at a slower rate than land (and loses heat slower) and thus air above the Pacific Ocean stays cool throughout the day. However, as the air over Oakland and San Francisco heats up due to bustling cable cars and fumes mixed with electric prius humming, that air rises, and the vacuum will pull the cooler air chilling over the Pacific Ocean. This is why the Bay Area is so windy all the time, and partially also explains why Half Moon Bay is always so foggy.
The route to Half Moon Bay goes straight through the mountains and as you ascend and descend through all this forrestry, you’ll also pass by charming farms boasting “fresh strawberries and asparagus” and a sign for Santa’s Christmas Tree Farm. You’ll even see some giant metal dinosaurs presumably for sale. Who would buy them and store them in their home? Dunno. Guess that’s why they’re still there. That said, they’re a great looking landmark.
At the end of highway 92, take a chill break at the Burger King and then decide which way to go on Highway 1 towards the beaches. If you follow it all the way, you’ll hit Southern California.