As we turned another hairpin bend there was a sign that said "Road Closed in 1000 feet" then another saying "Road Closed in 500 feet". Where was the detour? Then it occurred to us that in this part of CA there are no roads that lead to and from Route One. This is the only road and so there was nothing to do but turn around and drive the thirty five (windy) miles and to return to whence we came! At this point I was slightly concerned about gas (and our naivete!). I had 1/3 of a tank but you never know when you will see a gas station on these roads. We had passed a hotel en route, The Ragged Point Inn, and so we stopped there to take photos and have our lunch. The location of this place is amazing and I wondered how they got staff to drive up the mountain every day. They also had a gas pump. Gas prices are high all over USA right now and I have been amazed to pay $4.20 a gallon, but up here it was a staggering $5.55 a gallon. The cheap part of me kicked in and I decided I had enough to get back to Route 101 without paying those silly prices, and I just made it to a gas station without running out - the first time in the whole trip where I have allowed the fuel light to come on!
During our 70 mile scenic Big Sur detour, we also stopped to see a colony of Elephant Seals that beach along the coast at this time of year. They are freaky creatures, lying in the sand and flipping it over their backs to keep cool. Hopi was at first fascinated and then suddenly took a huge dislike to these marine mammals and wanted to run away. They are almost prehistoric in some ways, and smelly too, but quite fascinating unless you are a 12lb Teddy Bar doggy!
On we drove, taking a strange route (per GPS Woman) through Sacramento that at least avoided going through downtown San Francisco at rush hour, and we have arrived at out St. Helena cottage. I cooked pasta with chicken and mango sausage and tomorrow I will hit the wineries. Although Napa is the archetypal United States wine country, I still love it and feel very much at home here. If anyone knows of any jobs in this region for an unemployed hospitality guy with a Certified Wine Educator designation, lemme know!