Travels with Amos: Driving the Coastal Highway

The journey from Monterey, California to the Olympic National Park near Seattle, Washington was spectacular. I stayed on the coastal road for the entire trip, winding my way around farms and through redwood forests, along rivers and beside the Pacific. My senses are filled with majestic sights, and my heart and mind touched by meaningful stories. A neighboring camper asked me what I’ve enjoyed the most, and I responded that the days are woven together like a multi-patterned quilt that can’t be separated into discrete pieces without losing the beauty of the whole.
But I do agree with the words John Steinbeck wrote after traveling through the redwoods: “The redwoods once seen, leave a mark that stays with you always… from them comes silence and awe. The most irreverent of men, in the presence of redwood trees, goes under the spell of awe and respect.”

I’ve collected nearly a notebook full of places, people and stories, and a journal full of personal reflections. But I am too engaged in the continuing quest to pull away and organize the many experiences into discrete posts. Suffice it to say that the picture we get of America from the media and our politicians is quite different from the portrait I see emerging from my travels. I’ll share fully when I return to Asheville and have time to reflect on the whole, rather than trying to break it into pieces as I go. The photos of the coastal trip can be found at

A concluding thought from John Steinbeck: “A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike… We find after years of struggle that we do not take a trip; a trip takes us.”