Traveling the Pacific Coast Highway

Have you ever wanted to just jump on your motorcycle and travel the Pacific Coast Highway? To ride and along and enjoy the beautifully blue skies and the sandy beaches? To enjoy the smell of the salt water thick in the air and the most perfectly comfortable temperature you could imagine? Well, I just did it and it was AWESOME!

end of the trail

Along with my youngest son and my two brother in laws, I began this journey in Santa Monica, California. We woke up early in the morning to get a jump on the day. With more than a thousand miles to go and only a few days to do it, we didn’t want to waste any time sleeping. We knew going into this that our traveling time would be slower than using the interstate, but that was the entire reason for this ride. So we began by finishing what we started in 2013 and found the “end of trail”. You can read all about that ride here.

You know, it was rather interesting, I had not been to the Santa Monica pier since I was a teen aged kid, but I just did not remember the fresh ocean air smelling so much like marijuana…I guess things have changed a bit over the years.

We decided to walk the pier and check out the shops. I remembered this being a lot better than it was…That may be because things have changed or maybe because I’m now old and cranky. Either way, we didn’t hang out here long. We took our picture at the sign and got back on our bikes headed north.

With Santa Monica in our rear view mirror, we were headed into the playground for the rich and famous…Malibu!

El MatadorOf all the beaches along the Pacific Coast Highway, one of my favorites has always been El Matador State Beach. The sea stacks on this beach are simply breathtaking. We swung in for a couple of pictures and to hang out for a bit. Not much we could do since we were dressed for riding, not swimming, so enjoying the ocean landscaping, we took off again and continued on our merry way.

As we rode up the coast, I was reminded of just how beautiful this area is. I grew up just north of Malibu in the city of Oxnard but left shortly after I was married to ensure that my children did not grow up in a gang infested cesspool. I recalled leaving behind all of the bad, but I had forgotten all of this incredible shoreline and fresh ocean air.

We soon came across a vendor on the side of the highway selling cherries and decided to stop. It turns out she was selling Rainier cherries, grown in our home state of Washington…so we paid her the $5.00 for a basket (even though we get them at home for $2.00) and relaxed while we starred out at the ocean and ate them. Mugu Rock

Cherries gone, it was time to move on. I had been looking forward to getting to Mugu Rock. This was where we used to all gather and hang out when we were in our wild and reckless teenage years. As we came around the bend in the road, there it was standing out jMugu Rockust as large and in charge as when we were young. We pulled in and the memories began to flood back.

My boy had never been here, but as soon as we told him that we used to climb the rock, he decided he needed to do the same. He made it further up than any of us did, but not as far as when we were kids. He took a few pictures from up on the rock then climbed back down to earth to join us.

When we finished reminiscing about the good old days we jumped back on our bikes and continued on the Pacific Coast Highway through Oxnard and then we jumped on highway 101 and headed north.

We continued to jump off of the 101 when it would rejoin the P.C.H. and cruise along the ocean front until we were forced back onto the 101. While the coast along Ventura and Santa Barbara counties in certainly beautiful, it just doesn’t compare the beaches in Malibu.

If you ever get the opportunity to enjoy this serene ride, be sure that you do it!




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Daniel Thorp

I am a Husband, a father, and a grandfather. I have been married to my beautiful bride for 30 years, yet it only feels like 4 minutes...under water...Just kidding! I have three sons, one grandson, and one grand daughter (finally a girl!) My love for motorcycles happened very early in life and has not stopped. I transitioned from dual sport motorcycles (we called them enduros way back when) to sport bikes, and finally to crusiers. The wife and I own a few different bikes (we have been told we have an addiction!) and we ride them all. I intend to ride until the day I drop (unless the good Lord has different plans for me), and wanted to share some of my experiences with the rest of the world. Be safe and keep the shiny side up!

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