Pacific Coast Holiday Run December 6, 2020

This is a PAID Member Event Only!  Your hosts for the event: Gordon & Alison Lee Meet Up Location #1 Great Highway Parking Lot San Franc...

RECAP Paso Robles to Santa Barbara Overnight Run February 2020

Paso Robles to Santa Barbara (via Foxen Canyon and San Marco Pass)

Your Hosts: Simon and Nikki Tildesley

Our first overnight run of the year started in Paso Robles. This run gave people the options to start their weekend on Friday or Saturday. For those who opted for the additional Friday night stay – some of us took the option to visit the Sensorio Field of Light to enjoy the creation by Bruce Munro. See the photos link below for some great pictures.

Saturday morning gave us a later than normal start to allow for those who had not opted for the Friday night stay to drive down to Paso Robles without having to start too early. The day start chilly with the threat of some showers all day but the usual coffee at the drivers meeting kept us warm. 13 MINI’s were going to drive this event, which was taking us on some new roads for the club. 

We set off from Paso Robles taking US 101 before heading onto Highway 46 passing many wineries. Some miles down the road, the group turned off onto Old Creek Road giving us 9 miles for pure fun twisties allowing us to enjoy our MINI’s more.

Old Creek Road led us on the infamous Highway 1 where we drove south towards Pismo Beach. Exiting Highway 1, the group proceeded to pass through Pismo Beach so we could continue on Highway 1 South towards Santa Maria. Unfortunately, the group got a little split up in Pismo Beach due to the number of turns and stop signs with some of the group passing in opposite directions. However, with a 5 min wait on the side of the road – the group was back together and we continued our journey.

As was continued our drive south – we drove through the vast farmlands of California before making a short comfort break in Santa Maria. Heading from Santa Maria – we picked up the Foxen Canyon Road which was the second opportunity on this trip to enjoy some twistities and get our MINI's doing what they do best – have some fun!!

Leaving the twisties behind – we turned onto Highway 154 (San Marco Pass) which is a great driving road. Lots of good paving and clear views of the road ahead. Our lunch stop was now only a matter of a few minutes away at the Cold Spring Tavern.
As we arrived at the tavern later than planned – we unfortunately lost our seating reservation. I was not able to call ahead as there was no phone service in the mountains. This did not spoil lunch though as plan B kicked in. We grabbed a tri-tip sandwich from the walk up counter, and sat outside with a beer and enjoyed the atmosphere. The tavern is a bizarre little place and well worth a visit if you are ever in the area.

After our late lunch, it was time for the final part of the drive to head down the San Marco pass into Santa Barbara. This is a great piece of road as the roads clings to the mountainside and gives great views out towards the Pacific Ocean. Once in Santa Barbara – everyone split off to their own respective hotels. The evening didn’t have any particular agenda – people made their own arrangements and just enjoyed the city for what it had to offer.

The Sunday optional run to the military museum didn’t take place as most people had opted to do their own thing.

A great run on some great roads.

Simon & Nikki 

Check out the great pictures from the run.

Don't forget to sign up for the March run to Big Sur 


A-MINI-zing Race - April 18, 2020

Hi Everyone, 

Will we have repeat winners for 2020's a-MINI-zing Race on April 18th?

Who's up for the challenge against 2017 a-MINI-zing Race San Luis Obispo Winners,  Brian D and Crystal T. 

or Team Stitch&Co from 2018 Solvang a-MINI-zing Race Winners.

What is a-MINI-zing Race? 
As a lover of  'Amazing Race' on CBS, I created 'a-MIN-zing Race'. However, the point is NOT who gets to the finish first, but who captures the essence of the clues the best.  There are various types of clues just like Amazing Race.  
  • Route Info - Tells you how to travel, by foot or by MINI, and what your team needs to accomplish to complete the clue
  • Detour - All team members participate where you have a choice between two tasks, choose the one you think you can complete quicker, if you can't complete it, you will need to complete the other option
  • Roadblock - A task that only ONE team member must perform. 
  • Pit Stop - Find "Phil" at the mat to end the a-MINI-zing Race 


Since we have some really competitive club members, I've tried to up my game for this year's a-MINI-zing Race.  Before each clue is opened, you will need to solve a Cryptogram.  

What is a Cryptogram? 
A cryptogram is a type of puzzle that consists of a short piece of encrypted text. Generally the cipher used to encrypt the text is simple enough that the cryptogram can be solved by hand. We will be using a substitution ciphers where each Number is replaced by a different Letter. You will be given a few number/letter combos to get you started and the same key will be used for all clues. After you'd solved a few you pretty much have the answers for the rest of them.  You will use information from Cryptogram to get address locations of enclosed clue.   

Using Instagram This Year
For this year's a-MINI-ing Race, it would be great if you have an Instagram account. 

I ask that you tag your photos with:
  • @norcal_minis
  • #AminizingRace2020
  • #YourTeamName

As part of your RSVP, how about posting on Instagram a photo of your team with your MINI.  Don't forget to include your Team Name. This way everyone will know who the competitors are for 2020's a-MINI-zing Race.

Be sure to Follow @norcal_ministhe Official NorCal MINIs account for Northern California's premier MINI club since 2003.  Do NOT use @norcalminis as we do not know who created that account and it's not the official club account.

Christine & Michael Toibin

Meet Up Location:
Parking Lot
2505 Riverside Blvd, 

Sacramento, CA 95818

There's a Starbucks inside and a Valero gas station across the street. 

Meeting Time/Departure Time:
10 am/10:30 am

Optional Lunch:  TBD

RVSP by April 10th is required, as I have to have time to prepare all of clue envelopes.


By the way if you are not a fully paid member of NorCal Minis there is a $5.00 fee for the event but can be applied to your membership fee for the year if you join up. Check out the details below: Create your MotorSportReg Account and Join Today! Use the NorCal MINIs Membership link below:

Instructions for joining MotorSportReg and joining NorCal MINIs can be found in the following document: I