Wednesday, January 30, 2013

2012 California Road Trip 

Part 111

 Santa Barbara Mission and Dunes Oceano 

After 3 days in Los Angeles visiting family and friends for the Thanksgiving holiday, we headed north toward Morro Bay and the Central California coast below Big Sur.  Our first stop was at the mission at Santa Barbara.

Mission Santa Barbara, also known as Santa Barbara Mission, is a Spanish mission founded by the Franciscan order near present-day Santa Barbara, California. It was founded by Padre Fermín Lasuén on December 4, 1786, the feast day of Saint Barbara, as the tenth mission for the religious conversion of the indigenous local ChumashBarbareño tribe of Native American people. The mission is the namesake of the city of Santa Barbara as well as Santa Barbara County.

The Mission grounds occupy a rise between the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Ynez Mountains, and were consecrated by Father Fermín Lasuén, who had taken over the presidency of the California mission chain upon the death of Father Presidente Junípero Serra. Mission Santa Barbara is the only mission to remain under the leadership of the Franciscan Friars since its founding, and today is a parish church of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.

We arrived at the mission in the early afternoon and explored the external grounds.  The building in magnificent and has a lot of trees and plants in green colors even in November.  Having lived in Colorado the past 40+ years, I guess I forgot how great and green California (my mostly home state) is all year round.  The weather was beautiful, sunny and clear skies.  The first 3 photos below show the main building of the mission.


This photo shows Kathleen photographing a fountain in the main entrance to the mission.

Here is a detailed shot of the fountain and a humming bird pausing for a drink.

Here is a shot of the fountain and the front of the mission.

Here is a photo of some fading sidewalk art.

Here is a close up of a cactus plant.

This shot shows one of the arch ways between section of the mission.

This shot shows a few of the plants and trees on the mission grounds framed in an arch.

Dune Oceano and Beaches North

These are massive sanddunes located near Pismo Beach.  These dunes are very large and lead right to the ocean.  Ed Weston and Ansel Adams made several famous photographs on these dunes.  The route we took to get to the dunes was amazing in that we drove through a forested area and then up a paved road, mostly covered by sand, for about 2 miles and then cresting a hill and came to a parking lot over looking the dunes and the ocean.

We talked to a couple that had spent 2.5 hours hiking to the top of the highest dune starting at our parking area. 

The beaches and ocean surf, and distant mountain vistas were really great from this beach.

After leaving the dunes Oceano, we headed north toward Morro Bay.  Along the coastal highway we stopped and Kathleen captured this sunset shot.


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