Coors Tour - California
This blogpost will be the third and final installment of our so-called Coors Tour to California in 1970. After leaving Lake Tahoe, our caravan made a stop in Modesto, headquarters for Boone’s Farm winery, our second favorite drink at the time after Coors. Boone’s Farm was the cheapest alcoholic drink at the time so served it’s purpose well when we ran out of Coors or was low on cash.
After touring the winery and sampling some of their "fine" wine, the caravan headed west to our fraternity brother Tom Winslow's place in Milpitas, south of San Francisco. As a California guy, Tom’s nickname was Surfer, and he looked the part. Coolest guy in the frat house, he was a few years ahead of us and had graduated, so he invited us to stay at his place, promising a frig stocked full of Coors to culminate our California trip across the country.
Tom’s place was perfect, with enough beds for all of us to sleep comfortably. And just as promised, he had plenty of Coors on hand.
Given Tom’s nickname, our first venture out after arriving was to Half Moon Bay, the famous surfing beach in that part of California. To get there from Milpitas, we drove right through what is now Silicon Valley, the region given that moniker a few years later when Intel invented the microchip. Back then the area was only a bunch of sleepy, bedroom communities!
At Half Moon Bay, the surf was up, but I never could manage to stand up on the board. So most of us just laid flat on the surf board and rode the wave in. That was a lot of fun in itself. But mostly we just girl-watched and sucked down more Coors.
Our next venture was an Oakland A’s game, seeing a bunch of future Hall-of-Famers play. I forget who won, but the Coors was cold and refreshing! The A's were a real nemesis during that time for the Big Red Machine that was just getting rolling, eventually yielding a few Hall-of-Famers themselves; Bench, Morgan, Perez and Anderson (and Pete Rose, in my book!).
The next day, we headed into San Francisco, enjoying the cable cars, Golden Gate Bridge, Sausalito and especially Haight-Asbury, the hippy capital of the world. We didn’t fit in too well, but sure enjoyed the scenery!
Our last night in California was spent at Tom’s favorite bar in Milpitas. He had told us we had to be out of the house by 8:00 the next morning, so after getting in around 2:00 in the morning, we told Tom to wake us us before it was time to leave. 8:00am came and went, when finally a bunch of brawny guys showed up to find Tom fast asleep with his alarm clock blasting away to no avail.
Turns out Tom shared a home with a bunch of firemen who were on duty during our stay and their shift was over, so they arrived home hoping to go to sleep, but finding all the beds full of strangers - us! So we hightailed it out of there and began our trek back home.
That old Greenbrier had served us well, being our Coorsmobile, surf wagon and hippy van all rolled into one.
But since I was riding in the Mercury Cyclone GT, we kicked into high gear and left the Greenbrier in our dust. We literally drove all the way across country without stopping. Two of us were always sleeping in the back seat while the other two were driving and riding shotgun. I distinctly recall driving the last leg from Chicago to Dayton at about 3:00 in the morning. Somehow we made it in one piece.
More Coors stuff
Coors founder's grandson dies at 102: https://apple.news/AxX312glMRE2eWuHShycD7w
Coors history: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ytWQfKByFDQ
Coors rides balloon to 80,000 feet -75 degrees - cold indication mountains when cold: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BzF6scSZo40
Coors tribute: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fMid9He_wPQ
Thanks for riding along with us on our 1970 Coors tour to California