Sage designed its Xi2 saltwater fly rod so that you can feel the shaft load with power in your backcast, then time your forward movement to precisely drop that Crazy Charlie in front of your quarry. $640; www.sageflyfish.com
The Pacific stretching westward, rolling hills, empty beaches inhabited only by sea lionsthere's no getting around it: The West Coast's Highway 1/101 is the classic summer drive. Head out on the 734-mile stretch winding from San Francisco to Astoria, Oregon, for spectacular scenery, crowd-free adventures, and the wind-in-the-hair perma-grin you can only get on the open road. Our weekend guide:
Mile 44: Fuel up on Pacific oysters ordered live from the seawater tanks at the Tomales Bay Oyster Company, a working farm in Marshall. 415-663-1242
Mile 196: Plunge into a swimming hole along the highway as it follows the South Fork of the Eel River through Richardson Grove State Park. 707-247-3318, www.parks.ca.gov
Mile 319: Hike beneath 2,000-year-old, 300-foot redwoods at Redwood National Park and Redwood State Park. 707-464-6101, www.nps.gov/redw
Mile 513: Boogie-board the 500-foot sand dunes of Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area, then bed down in a deluxe yurt at Umpqua Lighthouse State Park. $65 for up to seven people; 800-452-5687, www.oregonstateparks.org
Mile 640: Sea-kayak, hang- glide, or surf at Cape Kiwanda State Natural Area. 800-551-6949, www.oregonstateparks.org
Mile 695: Grab a table at the Sea Shack (503-368-7897), on Nehalem Bay in Wheeler, for a bucket of Cajun shrimp and an icy beer. At Wheeler Marina (503- 368-5780), rent a boat and traps to go crabbing off Nehalem Bay State Park.