Club Blog

Read our House Rules before commenting on a blog post.

Coasting along in California

Hearst Castle was built by media mogul William Randolph Hearst

STEVE ADAMS is touring California in a motorhome for a feature that will appear in Camping & Caravanning magazine later this year. Here’s his latest report from the road.

As media moguls go, I’d take William Randolph Hearst over Rupert Murdoch any day of the week. The eccentric millionaire, often assumed to be the inspiration for Citizen Kane, was the only son of a wealthy family (gold rush money, as well as silver and other precious metals) and went on to run about 30 newspapers as well as have a finger in umpteen media pies, including film and TV.

He’s best known for creating Hearst Castle (he called it simply ‘The Ranch’), an incredible 165-room hilltop property set on 123 acres of land near San Simeon. The absurdly excessive ‘Enchanted Hill’ estate took decades to complete and was inspired by – and contains – an array of treasures seen (and in some case collected) by Hearst during his regular travels to Europe. It’s largely based on a Spanish cathedral, and every room – or certainly the ones we saw during our tour – brims with incredible art. The castle is also surrounded by incredible statues, villas, Roman baths and more, many with views across the hills to the coast.

Read & comment
Guest Blogger avatar Posted by
Guest Blogger
X

Guest Blogger

Guest Blogger avatar

This is a guest blog entry. All views are that of the author and not necessarily shared by the Club. Mention of any product or service on the blog does not constitute endorsement by the Club. All blog posts are moderated before going live.

Read other posts by Guest Blogger

A very Good Friday

The courthouse at Santa Barbara

STEVE ADAMS is touring California in a motorhome for a feature that will appear in Camping & Caravanning magazine later this year. Here’s his latest report from the road.

Without wanting to cast aspersions or tempt fate, if you’re ever going to get into trouble with the law, Santa Barbara is the place to do it. The courthouse, built in 1929 in Spanish Moorish style and featuring a ridiculously ornate staircase and an 85-foot clocktower, is so beautiful you’ll forget your freedom is on the line.

My visit was purely of a touristic nature – we made excellent time on our six-hour drive from Yosemite the previous day but no laws were broken – and came at the end of a fairly relaxed Good Friday, which also happened to be my birthday. The lovely Debbie, manageress of Santa Barbara Sunrise RV Park, presented me with some celebratory cookies to commemorate the occasion, but please note her generous gesture has no bearing on my recommendation of the site if you’re ever visiting the area. It’s not exactly picturesque, but the facilities are excellent and the location ideal for a walk to the beach or downtown area, and there’s also a nearby bus stop for the latter (the set rate fare for any destination is just $1.75 for adults and children ride free). The site might be a little close to the freeway for some but we barely noticed the noise and got our best night’s sleep as well as our first lie-in of the holiday so far. The previous day’s driving, followed by a night out at Soho, one of Santa Barbara’s best live music venues, clearly tipped us over the edge in terms of sleep deprivation.

Read & comment
Guest Blogger avatar Posted by
Guest Blogger
X

Guest Blogger

Guest Blogger avatar

This is a guest blog entry. All views are that of the author and not necessarily shared by the Club. Mention of any product or service on the blog does not constitute endorsement by the Club. All blog posts are moderated before going live.

Read other posts by Guest Blogger

Melting our hearts

Steve at Glacier Point, with Half Dome in the background

STEVE ADAMS is touring California in a motorhome for a feature that will appear in Camping & Caravanning magazine later this year. Here’s his latest report from the road.

Mark Twain apparently once said there are two seasons in the Sierras – ‘the end of winter and the start of the next one’. Or words to that effect. I’m paraphrasing the coach driver/tour guide who probably paraphrased Twain, but I’m sure you get the message.

That said, after another day of glorious sunshine and 80º temperatures in Yosemite National Park, I’m happy to report that the Huckleberry Finn author’s tongue-in-cheek comment holds little water in 2014. Indeed the Park experienced such a mild winter this year that many of its magnificent waterfalls – fed by melting snow – are in danger of drying up before the summer season is over.

Read more & comment
Guest Blogger avatar Posted by
Guest Blogger
X

Guest Blogger

Guest Blogger avatar

This is a guest blog entry. All views are that of the author and not necessarily shared by the Club. Mention of any product or service on the blog does not constitute endorsement by the Club. All blog posts are moderated before going live.

Read other posts by Guest Blogger
| Club Blog
Previous Previous
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5