San Diego Wrap-up

San Diego, CA

It’s been a while since our last post.  While we have been busy here along Mission Bay, we haven’t done much that would be “blog worthy.”  Since the traffic in San Diego can be a bit trying, we spent most of our time riding our bicycles around the bay to some of the nearby beach communities (riding 149 miles).  We did manage to join Steve and MonaLiza (Lowe’s RV Adventures) on a hike from their site in Sweetwater Summit Regional Park on the south side of San Diego.

Young hikers overlooking the Sweetwater Reservoir

One afternoon we went down to the San Diego harbor area to visit the USS Midway, a decommissioned aircraft carrier permanently docked there and serving as a museum.

Side view of the Midway

The USS Midway was America’s longest serving aircraft carrier of the 20th century, from 1945 to 1992. Approximately 200,000 sailors served aboard the carrier, known for several naval aviation breakthroughs as well as several humanitarian missions. It was the only carrier to serve the entire length of the Cold War and beyond.

The flight deck

A young sailor makes his way to his battle station

We spent about three hours touring the ship and still didn’t see everything.  Don’t miss it if you visit San Diego!

Sailors’ quarters – they had a locker and storage under each bunk

On Christmas Eve we drove down to the airport to pick up daughter Jessica and son-in-law Dan as they arrived on a flight from Baltimore.

The eagle has landed

One of the first things we did with them was to drive over the harbor to make one of the must do stops in San Diego, a visit to the old Hotel Del Coronado in Coronado.

Looking at the old hotel from the beach

The hotel is one of the few surviving examples of an American architectural genre: the wooden Victorian beach resort.  It is the second largest wooden structure in the United States (after the Tillamook Air Museum in Oregon) and was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1977.  When it opened in 1888, it was the largest resort hotel in the world.  It has hosted presidents, royalty, and celebrities through the years and has been featured in numerous movies and books.  In fact, the night of our visit it was pictured in a skit on Saturday Night Live.

Upside down Christmas tree in the hotel lobby

It’s a bit warmer than Baltimore!

We wanted to share a desert experience with Dan and Jessica so one day during their visit we drove east about 80 miles to visit Borrego Springs and hike a slot canyon in the Anza Borrego State Desert Park.  We’re going to Borrego Springs for a month after we leave San Diego but thought the young couple from the east would enjoy visiting it.  Our first stop was at the Calcite Mine Slot Canyon.

This is a great little hike if you don’t have a great deal of time but want to experience hiking up a slot canyon.

Next we drove out to Fonts Point for lunch overlooking the badlands.

Lunch with a view

Our lunch spot looking west at Borrego Springs

One afternoon we played tourist while visiting a couple of beach towns and a couple of craft breweries.  Our first stop was in nearby Ocean Beach where we enjoyed pizza at Pizza Port.  They had some craft beers on the menu but none of them sounded good to us, so we saved our tasting until after lunch.

Clear skies and palm trees in late December. What’s not to like!

After lunch we walked a few blocks to the newly opened Belching Beaver tasting room.

We enjoyed a flight of beers, but our favorite is still their Peanut Butter Milk Stout.

Jessica and Dan with the Ocean Beach Pier in the background

A busker with bagpipes was on fire!

Next we drove north along the coast for a visit to the Children’s Pool in La Jolla.  The Children’s Pool is a small beach partially protected by a seawall. The original intention was to create a fully protected swimming area, but in recent years sand has filled in much of the area inside the wall.

The pool has become a popular viewing area for harbor seals.  Seals and occasionally seal lions haul out on the beach to rest year round.  The Children’s Pool Beach is closed to public access during harbor seal pupping season, Dec. 15 through May 15.

Coastal view looking north from La Jolla

For dinner we drove east of La Jolla to Mirimar for a visit to the Ballast Point Brewing Company.

A celebrity waits by the door for his table

We enjoyed tasting some of their many craft beers and enjoyed a delicious meal.

The nitro milk stout was our favorite

After a great visit, Jessica and Dan headed back to the east coast, and we headed east to the desert of Borrego Springs for a month of golfing and hiking.  Dave and Sue (Beluga’s  Excellent Adventures)  will join us so we get to have some pooch time with Lewis.

More on that later . . .

One final sunset over Mission Bay

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20 Responses to San Diego Wrap-up

  1. Joan says:

    I have never liked beer…..but went to the Belching Beaver in Vista while visiting our daughter’s family for Christmas. I tried the peanut butter milk stout and loved it!!! We just left the Anza Borrego and also went to Font’s Point. We hiked The Slot and thought it was fun. Next time we’ll try the calcite mine one. Have safe travels, fellow-Ashlanders!

  2. Gay says:

    Your pictures of SD kinda made me homesick…we have spent the past few winters there. What a treat to spend Christmas with Jessica and Dan and so happy for all of you the weather was picture perfect. Two times our reservations at Borrego Springs have had to be cancelled…one of these days we will get there (I hope!). Enjoy you Lew time! Happy New Year!

  3. Ingrid says:

    How wonderful that Jessica and Dan were able to join you. Great way to spend the holidays. Happy New Year and I look forward to reading about your travels in 2018.

  4. Box Canyon Blogger Mark says:

    Happy New Year and Happy Trails.
    Box Canyon Mark

  5. pmbweaver says:

    We were in SD many, many years ago. I remember how clean it was.
    Thanks for the photos of the USS Midway. I know we would love to take that tour. It is like a little city.

    Oh my…I love that photo of the plane coming in. How cool.
    Wonderful time with Jessica and Dan. They look so good. Darling family photo.

    Borrego Springs is one of our all time favorite places. What a great hike for the Easterners.
    Tell Dave and Sue we send our love. Happy 2018 to y’all. Enjoy the journey.

  6. georgeyates says:

    What a fun time you had there , love the area around Sand Diego and Borrego springs nice that you got to the slot canyon.

  7. What a whirlwind tour you had with Jessica and Dan!

    I can hear you breathing a sigh of relief as you unwind from the big city! Happy New Year!

  8. What a treat to have Dan and Jessica come visit over Christmas! Enjoy your time in Borrego Springs.

  9. Laurel says:

    Looks like you had a great time with Jessica and Dan sharing all the good stuff in San Diego — and even threw in a bonus desert hike! Love the family photo on the beach. I know you’ve enjoyed those sunsets and time with friends in SD, but I’m sure you’re happy to be back in the peace of the desert. Wishing you a Happy New Year and many more wonderful adventures in 2018! Big hugs from both of us, and I hope we get to meet up as many times as we did last year!

  10. Steve & Dianne Colibaba says:

    Some wonderful family time over Christmas…priceless!
    Must put San Diego on our “must visit” list…we were there years ago when our kids were little.
    Enjoy Borrego Springs…one of our favorite spots!

  11. Jeff says:

    You covered most of San Diego County in such a short time! It’s always great to have family around for Christmas, and the weather cooperated nicely. Finally fog at the coast, enjoy Borrego where the sun is still shinning.

  12. Susan Bank says:

    Not blog worthy? I loved this blog guys… highlights your “other” side. We all love to read your hiking and biking adventures, but it was fun seeing your adventures with Jessica and Dan. We’re fascinated by the landing pattern those huge planes are on….I wouldn’t want to live on that hillside though! I loved the picture of the colorful young hikers coming up out of the slot! See you soon!

  13. Sherry says:

    Wonderful picture of you 4 young people and also of you and your daughter and son-in-law. Maybe one day we’ll meet you guys in the Baltimore airport going to visit our daughters. You really took them to some nice hikes Had to LOL at “Belching Beaver”, what a name and Peanut Butter Milk Stout. I don’t like beer but I’d sure be willing to taste that. What a beautiful sunset. Looking forward to your next stop.

  14. Looks like you had a great month in SD despite the traffic. Jessica and Dan are such a cute couple. They must have loved the weather!

  15. geogypsy2u says:

    Your time at the beach seemed to fly by. Especially nice to have Jessica and Dan visit.

  16. LuAnn says:

    As much as you both like SD and having time with family, I am guessing you two are back in your happy place, in the desert. Hope to see you soon!

  17. Jim and Barb says:

    The Belching Beaver Honey Wheat Ale is one of our all time favorites! So nice that you were able to get to see Jessica and Dan and hike a slot canyon as a bonus!

  18. Jodee Gravel says:

    Beaches, desert and brews shared with family – sounds pretty perfect to me!!

  19. We are currently in Q but were thinking of sneaking away for a weekend to visit San Diego (stomping grounds for my old Navy man husband). You have so many suggestions here we’ll have to try. What great adventures! Dawn

  20. Nancy says:

    Thanks so much for the links! I really enjoyed seeing the upside down tree at the hotel! Nice post!

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