Coastal Cruisin’

There are some suggestions that are offered and you immediately have to satisfy the very hole they pitted in your heart.

During my second week of travel out of three, I was highly encouraged to take a day trip for basic company research. I rented a car for my first time and drove in California, also for my first time, taking a wild, anxiety-filled roadtrip two hours south of San Francisco and found myself in a places that always sounded another lifetime away.

/MAD RAD/

The entire purpose of this slightly spontaneous trek was to visit the NHS Fun Factory–home to Santa Cruz Skateboards, Road Rider Wheels, and Independent Trucks. After some last minute emails while in San Francisco two days prior, my request to visit the company and tour the facilities was graciously granted. Thanks to two rad ladies, Kendall and Jessie, for setting-up and taking me on a personal tour through the company’s [history] museum, department offices, production floor, and testing facilities.

NHS Fun Factory
NHS Fun Factory, Santa Cruz

The museum was small but packed with key items that historically built the company. Santa Cruz originated as a surfboard company commissioned by a Hawaiian contact to manufacture skateboards. The birth of the Road Rider urethane wheel was via the roller that fed paper through a printer. There was a mannequin display of the downhill longboard suit, pictures documenting padded shorts, and the team jacket that belonged the first female rider for Santa Cruz. I learned about the decade in which skateboarding pool-dropping hooligans earned a brief exile from society but soon came back into the public eye as a redefined sport with official print publications. And so much artwork–original pencil sketches on tracing paper and their screen-printed counterparts; various artistic styles for various riders; graphics from skateboarding infamy that are revisited from time to time. There was even a graffiti wall signed by pro-skateboarders and visiting fans alike.

NHS Fun Factory
Downhill Longboarding #beathutson // NHS Fun Factory, Santa Cruz

After the tour I walked the few blocks west to a beach of quiet popularity opposite to the tourist shore and recommended by the locals . Two hours dressed in early afternoon sunlight and warm air, I took in the architectural sights of little, dreamy beachside homes while meandering the sidewalks overlooking Seabright Beach. Eventually, I found myself next to a lighthouse at the end of the shore. Silhouettes of blue mountain tops lightly lined part of the horizon to my left, in complementary contrast with the rich browns and tans that grounded me. My toes finally met the Pacific Ocean for all its bitter chill, and I breathed in every inch of vast space stretched beyond my nose, beyond the coastline.

Seabright Beach, Santa Cruz

Seabright Beach, Santa Cruz
Seabright Beach, Santa Cruz

But my heart was growing anxious with another hunger. So my barefeet pushed back through the sand to begin my third and final venture of the day. I began my three hour drive back, up the very edge of this country’s coast on Route 1. It was this drive that a fellow Adobe employee suggested and I knew it was a lifetime opportunity that I would forever adore.

I kept the car unusually silent for an avid roadtripper, and forged past GSP navigation making my way through town until the two lane highway broke north into the coastal expanse. All the natural colors and land formations–the blue void to my left, towering mountains draped in green fields to my right. Nature as a true and honest work of art. And lighthouses, like daydreams made reality as they drifted past my perspective again and again. To say that this drive was the most beautiful scenic route I have ever taken is simply an understatement. To drive between the mountains the water’s edge; the very edge of a vast mass of land in which you reside nearly on the the other coast, is a feeling unlike any other.

California Route 1

California Route 1
California Route 1
/GNARLY RIDE/

Good Eats, Smooth Drinks

Sightglass Coffee. Beautiful venue.
Sugoi Sushi. Best sushi.

 

Window Seat Home

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