From San Francisco’s Golden Gate bridge, past the sheer cliffs of Big Sur to the sun-drenched beaches of Southern California, the views along the 644 miles of Highway 1 are breathtaking. The views of the Pacific crashing against the shore compete with the rugged beauty of the mountains, forests and gentle hills of California’s Central Coast. No wonder economists estimate that the Highway brings several billion dollars in tourism to the state every year.
Beautiful? Absolutely. No wonder engineers have found a way to take the road where no road was meant to go—across protected wetlands, over deep arroyos, and through active landslide areas, not to mention the earthquake faults. Highway 1 is in a constant struggle to survive. Cal Trans (California Department of Transportation) is constantly rebuilding the road after the adjacent mountain slides into the ocean, taking chunks of the Highway with it.
Since I live less than a mile from Highway 1, I’m grateful for the wo…