GoF West 2006

July 3-7, 2006, Welches, Oregon

At the time, this was the most ambitious trip we had ever taken in a vintage M.G. and it was one we will never forget. On June 29, 2006 we packed our 1949 MG TC tight with luggage and supplies before heading off on a 2,500 mile round trip journey to Mount Hood, Oregon. Accompanied by a small group of T-Types we made our way up the California and Oregon coastlines for five days before reaching our destination. Pacific Coast Highway is one of the most incredible drives on the planet and being in a vintage M.G. made it all the better.

Page One ~ The Journey There

We joined the caravan in Malibu and proceeded up Pacific Coast Highway to our first lunch stop in Carpenteria. Unfortunately it was shortly after this stop that we lost our first car, a TD, to a failed electronic ignition module. Due to complications with the car it was towed home and the owners later caught up with the caravan in a modern vehicle.

From Santa Barbara we drove up and over San Marcos Pass and into California’s wine country. Here the only liquid we bought was overpriced gasoline.

We joined back up with Pacific Coast Highway and traveled north to San Simeon for our first night’s stay. The next morning we took a small diversion to view some Elephant Seals at the beach just north of the motel before working our way up the coast.

Along the way we paused for a photo at Pidgeon Point Lighthouse…..

We crossed the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco and entered right into rush hour traffic leaving the city.

Near the top of a big grade in heavy traffic, one of the cars lost spark while in the fast lane. Luckily it fired back up and continued driving!

After a night in Santa Rosa, we set out for day three on route to Crescent City in Northern California. But part way through the day it was our turn to have a bit of trouble. A small section of the TC’s wiring harness had not been secured properly and was resting on the starter. The insulation melted and a couple wires welded themselves to the starter shaft! A quick patch was performed with some magic green wire and the car was once again running.

We passed through many more small towns before stopping for lunch at Benbow Inn, a European-style hotel in central California.

After lunch the caravan worked its way north along the coast and into the Redwood Forests. The 2,000 year old trees are amazing at over 300-feet tall! As we traveled north, the weather changed dramatically and the fog began to roll in. Within 40 miles we went from over 90-degree temperatures to the low 50’s and heavy fog. Despite the bitter cold for the next several hours, tops stayed down and the experience of driving these roads in an eerie blue light was very dramatic.

Our stay in Crescent City taught us a new meaning of the words “crappy motel”. But the rest of the day was gorgeous although it started out even colder than the previous day. By afternoon it was sunny and nice and we enjoyed the scenery as we crossed into Oregon.

After a night in Lincoln City, Oregon we set off on the last leg of the trip north to Welches where GoF would be held. A few of us decided to take advantage of the short day and detour to the Evergreen Aviation Museum. This is the home of the Spruce Goose as well as many other impressive aircraft. We arrived at the resort in Welches just in time for the initiation dinner.

On to Page Two…