We'll be adding to it daily all year. And we won't suggest an adventure unless one of the Travel section's staffers and contributors have tried it. What: More than 570 feet tall and 23 million years old, the rock is one of nine sisters -- nine volcanic peaks in San Luis Obispo County. Some can be climbed for nice views (including Black Hill and Cerro Cabrillo in Morro Bay State Park) -- but not this sister. You can't even walk all the way around her.
Reigning world champion Peter Sagan of Slovakia waited until the final seconds to make his move Tuesday in Stage 3 of the 12th Amgen Tour of California. After facing a headwind for most of the 120-mile course from Pismo Beach to Morro Bay, Sagan weaved through the pack, with less than a mile to go, and improved his position by 20 spots to ride among the top 15 cyclists. With the finish about 2,000 feet away, Sagan, a member of team BORA-hansgrohe, sprinted uphill and was shoulder to shoulder with several riders before he accelerated and won the longest stage of the tour by a bicycle length ahead of second-place finisher Rick Zabel of Germany, who rides for Team Katusha Alpecin. "My teammates helped to get me in the right position for the last run, and I have to thank them very much for that," Sagan said. Sagan has won a record 16 stages at the Tour of California.
It was certainly a rockier marriage proposal than most. Michael Banks, 27, climbed the 600-foot Morro Rock early Thursday and asked his girlfriend, via the Facetime app, to marry him. She said yes, Morro Bay State Park ranger Dale Kinney told the San Luis Obispo Tribune, but what happened next nearly ended their brief betrothal. Banks took a different, steeper path down on the Central Coast mountain's eastern face and became stranded on a small ledge, Kinney told the newspaper. A California Highway Patrol helicopter flew to the scene about 8:30 a.m. and a treacherous rescue ensued, with the helicopter blades whipping close to the rock.
California authorities are investigating the fatal shooting of a protected southern sea otter that had been rescued and returned to the ocean last year. The state Department of Fish and Wildlife said Tuesday that the dead otter was found floating in Morro Bay in September and a necropsy determined it was killed with a pellet gun. A numbered tag identified the animal as an otter that had previously been found tangled in a fishing line. It was rehabilitated and returned to the wild in July 2016. "The senseless shooting of any sea otter is concerning," said Mike Harris, a Fish and Wildlife senior environmental scientist who helped with the initial rescue, "but to discover a case such as this, where a team of conservation organizations had already successfully treated the animal for a life-threatening entanglement, is exceptionally troubling and frustrating."
An Argentinian tourist is fighting for her life after she, her husband and another couple visiting Rio de Janeiro tried to get to Christ the Redeemer statue following Google Maps directions -- and ended up in a dangerous favela (slum). According to O'Globo newspaper, 42-year-old Natalia Lorena Cappetti underwent surgery to remove a bullet that entered through her back. She remains in serious condition, the paper said. The two couples - one from Argentina, the other one from Spain - arrived in the city last week to attend the Carnival festivities. Overlooking Rio de Janeiro, the favela (or slum) of Vidigal - which is divided into a lower and an upper half - has become a battleground of sorts between the raffish tradition of the slums, and the gentrification and pacification process.