CA Central Coast Recommendations? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-03-2014, 09:51 AM   #1
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CA Central Coast Recommendations?

We're going to be spending Thanksgiving with family in the south Bay area and thinking of bringing the trailer and doing some exploring on the coast between Thousand Oaks and Monterey on the way up. Any recommendations for great camping spots? We're not self-contained, so bathrooms & showers are a must. Our preference is for public parks near the ocean, but we are open to other options. We do not need hook-ups.
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Old 09-03-2014, 10:26 AM   #2
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Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park is a beautiful camp ground in the red woods. Across the road is a road down to one of the best hidden beaches in California. Pfeiffer beach, easy hike down hill going to the beach but strenuous uphill back so take the car down. When hiking the area stay on the paths going out on your own you have to know what poison oak looks like and watch out for it. "leaves of three hiker must flee"
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Old 09-03-2014, 10:45 AM   #3
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Pismo Beach is southern California (both the good and bad) in nature but for a better camping experience when in the area go inland to Lopez lake and enjoy the best of both worlds.
Lopez Lake is a reservoir near the city of Arroyo Grande in San Luis Obispo County.
Camp - San Luis Obispo County Parks

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Old 09-03-2014, 11:59 AM   #4
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Pfeiffer Big Sur is nice and has hiking and nearby beaches. Andrew Molera state beach is near by and has horse back riding on the beach if you're into that sort of thing. Pismo state beach has a very interesting Monarch butterfly grove where they gather by the millions, but I don't recall specifically what months of the year they gather. Further north than Monterey, is New Brighton state beach which has camping, I really like that place, and even further up is Half Moon bay state beach, both of these have showers.
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Old 09-03-2014, 06:33 PM   #5
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There is also a state park at Hurst Castle State Park, it's across PCH, near the entrance to the Castle
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Old 09-03-2014, 11:24 PM   #6
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CA Central Coast Recommendations?

Thanks, all! I'm looking into both Pismo Beach (seems like the butterflies arrive in Nov.) and Pfeiffer SP at Big Sur (for the redwoods & hiking). There seem to be two CGs at Pismo: North Beach and Oceano. Any advice there?

Steve, I will look into Lopez Lake, but I think my wife prefers to be closer to the ocean. She's a Cali girl stuck in the mountains.
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Old 09-03-2014, 11:26 PM   #7
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Morro Bay State Park is nice, just across street from the bay, where you can kayak among lots of pelicans and the occasional harbor seal (this spring they even had a disoriented grey whale, I believe!), and there's a great little restaurant there. Hook ups, no hook ups and nice enough showers.


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Old 09-04-2014, 08:03 PM   #8
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Thanks for the suggestion, Nancy. We do have a couple of kayaks, but I don't think we'll be bringing them this time. I'll check it out as we pass through and maybe include it on a future trip, kayaks included.
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Old 09-05-2014, 04:56 AM   #9
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Limekiln State Park is a nice small park on the coast between Big Sur and San Simeon. Campground is under the bridge on the coast highway with a view and short walk to the beach. There are flush toilets and showers. Spent a week there in April with my adult son and we saw lots of whales, but fall is not the right time of year for whale watching. Several nice short hikes and some strenuous hikes, if you are into hiking. A couple guys in another site went out fishing in their kayaks and caught lots of fish.
I enjoyed walking down to the beach with my morning coffee.
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Old 09-12-2014, 11:54 PM   #10
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Of the 2 CG's at Pismo....I like North Beach.

Morro Bay SP is great and just a few blocks you are at nice restaurants with yummy sea food....oooo bread bowls with nice hot clam chowder would be great in November.
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Old 09-12-2014, 11:57 PM   #11
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Another vote for Limekiln - and if you traipse uphill toward the remains of the kiln, there's a California Condor preserve area where we saw a nesting pair last spring. That was a real treat!


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Old 09-13-2014, 08:28 AM   #12
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Thanks for all the suggestions! They are very helpful. I am also wondering about expected weather in mid-late November. Long-term climate averages indicate rain is typical, but I've also heard that recent years have been warmer and drier.
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Old 09-13-2014, 08:54 AM   #13
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If you are talking Big Sur area, expect cold, bone chilling fog & rain and be surprised if you get anything better.
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Old 09-13-2014, 09:47 AM   #14
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In Monterey itself, the city has a very nice, small, campground with showers and a dump station at the Veterans Memorial Park: City of Monterey | Veteran's Memorial Park

We have stayed there several times and enjoy the in-close location, beautiful pines and coastal trees. No hook ups, but the rates were very reasonable. Wake up services (Reveille) are provided free of charge from the nearby Naval Postgraduate School.

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