On New Year’s Eve 2016, after two flights followed by a 4-hour drive across the country, I arrived in Pasadena with my sister and two good friends to watch Penn State play in the Rose Bowl on Jan. 2. While football was the main purpose of the trip, we made plenty of time to explore and adventure through Southern California when we weren’t cheering on our beloved Nittany Lions.
Aside from the game, the two highlights of the trip were 1) driving through the Mojave Desert between Las Vegas and Pasadena and 2) roadtripping 100 miles north on the Pacific Coast Highway. The views were absolutely incredible — towering mountains running alongside Interstate 15 that opened up to a vast desert where you could see for miles…the sandy terrain contrasting against the orange sky as the sun set. It was almost as if we were on another planet. I unfortunately didn’t capture any photos of this leg of the trip since I was the driver.
The Pacific Highway was also unreal. We followed Route 1 between the California mountains and the Pacific Ocean through Santa Monica, Malibu, Ventura, and Santa Barbara. It was tough to keep my eyes on the road with all the beauty around us. It was a refreshing change from the gray winter weather we were having in New Jersey, and to which I returned to later in the week.
Even though the Rose Bowl didn’t end the way we wanted, I’m thankful for the adventure this game sent me on and opportunity to travel across the country with some special people to watch our alma mater in the best bowl game of the season. We Are. 🙂
– Devin Weakland, Owner & Photographer, Mile Square Moments LLC