Nepenthe in Big Sur escapes the flames

Nepenthe in Big Sur

Every time I cut a video about the fires going on in Northern California, particularly the one raging in Big Sur, I cringe — I can’t believe all that gorgeous scenery is going up in smoke and ash. I was glad to see, though, that Nepenthe, pictured above with its wood-carved¬† phoenix right in front, escaped unscathed — sort of.

At the popular restaurant Nepenthe, flames burned all the way up to a knoll above the edge of Highway 1 and across from the restaurant’s famed patio with its epic ocean view.


Highway 1 remains closed between Nepenthe Restaurant and Esalen. Because burned hills can’t hold rock, the highway is dangerously littered with falling debris.

Nepenthe's view

I say sort of because part of Nepenthe’s draw is the wonderful views of the ocean and the lush mountains. Plus, with Highway 1 being closed, there will be less traffic to the restaurant, and I’m guessing their business is heavily dependent on tourist traffic.

Big Sur from Nepenthe

This is a picture taken from Nepenthe’s balcony. It happens to be my wallpaper right now. It really does make me sad to think that fire is ravaging all this beauty. I know there are those who say that its part of nature, that fire is needed to cleanse out wild areas from time to time, but still. It still makes me sad.