Friday morning, I dispensed with the idea of sticking close to the coast for the ride down to SFO; the extra travel time wasn't worth it, since it was gonna be cold and cloudy anyway. So I headed east from Fort Bragg to get onto US-101 for a quicker ride. After I had gone about 10 miles into the hills and redwood forests, the sky was blue again, and the temperature back up in the 80s. Damn, I had spent 3 days holed up in a motel with lousy weather outside, when all this was only minutes away!
I sped on down US-101, crossed the Golden Gate Bridge, and it felt good to be on the familiar streets of the city. I stayed on CA-1 through Golden Gate Park, and veered off towards the ocean for the drive down the coast to Half Moon Bay. Arriving after dark, it was cloudy and cold, and I regretted doing the old reservation thing instead of cruising around for a place to stay as I usually do. I remembered from my days at Stanford how the Los Altos Hills, a small mountain range running up the center of the San Francisco Peninsula, act like a dam against the marine layer; as you can see from the air coming into SFO airport, the clouds come in and stop at the hills, and the bay side of the peninsula enjoys sunny skies regardless of what's on the ocean side. This was confirmed as I later drove the eastbound highway towards US-101 on the bay side, and the night sky opened up for a clear ride up to the City. So while it was good to have a place to stay, with Internet, I figured I'd find another with better weather tomorrow.