Saturday, October 29, 2011

Big, Busy, and Beautiful San Francisco

After arriving in San Francisco we had to decide which would be the best way to explore this city. We chose the fast speed (40 mph -- wow!) ferry from Larkspur (a 10-minute walk from our RV park) and were on Market Street in a half an hour!! We had expected fog but were blessed by clear skies and a light wind so the views of the bay, and the bridges were exceptional.

As soon as we got off the ferry we noticed the San Francisco branch of the Occupy Wall Street movement.
This was one of the most creative banners that we saw at this encampment in the financial district of the city.

At Fisherman's Wharf we enjoyed lunch at a picnic table with seagulls for company, we also visited a free museum filled with antique nickelodeons, arcade games and player pianos.

The passengers had to hold on tight as the cable car zipped down the hill!!

Colorful China Town!!

The cable cars, trolleys, and everyday drivers seem to take the steep hills in stride, we were winded climbing up to Lombard Street but how could we resist??

We also drove through Golden Gate Park and enjoyed wandering through the Japanese Tea Garden- a peaceful, well manicured stop. We thoroughly enjoyed our visit to the City by the Bay. However city life is not for us and we will head to Yosemite next.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Passing Through Wine Country

Since we're in no hurry to head south with all the other snowbirds we decided to spend a few days amongst the vineyards.

It was all beautiful but the best thing was the smell of the grapes. Because it is the "crushing" time of year, the aroma of the fresh grapes was everywhere we went.

Speaking of snowbirds, it's a bit warm here, almost hot with highs in the upper 80s. After 2 1/2 months on the coast we've become accustomed to 60-70 degree foggy weather which we really like. 'hope we're not heading for the desert too soon.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Bye Coast- We'll be back!

It's time to leave crashing waves, cool misty weather, fog horns lulling us to sleep every night and head for The San Francisco Bay.

For a long time California looked like more Oregon, but that's all changing now.

There are a lot of signs warning people about the cliff trails here, but this is my favorite. Ouch!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Amazing Eureka

Our latest campsite is next to a Redwood. This photo is a bit deceptive as the trunk of this Redwood is 15 feet in diameter and the tree is far too short. It's actually a cluster of small Redwoods growing out of an old stump, whose lumber was harvested decades ago.

The quintessential Victorian home of Victorian homes; the Carson Mansion on the Eureka waterfront.

Some of the best murals we've seen are here in Eureka; here are three we found.

Blue Ox Millworks, a Victorian Millwork Shop, School and Museum was at the top of my must see list here in Eureka.

Here, master woodworker, Eric, showed me how this pedal powered 19th century scroll saw worked.

The coolest thing about this shop is that most of the tools are 100+ years old but are still used today to create beautiful custom millwork for current projects throughout the country. Eric even showed me photos of a recent job he did for a house in Greenwich, Connecticut.

Eric demonstrated how well this 19th century hand cranked table saw cut and could power feed at the same time.

Monday, October 17, 2011

California's Lost Coast

This evening we welcome new follower; " The Wanderer". Thanks for joining us, we appreciate your companionship.

I don't think it's entirely accurate that I labelled the header photo The Lost Coast. The black sand beach photo below is where the 23 mile foot trail begins and heads down along the Lost Coast towards Shelter Cove. The 100+ mile drive we took was as thrilling and beautiful as it was rough and steep; not a road for a motorhome or trailer for sure. Here's an animated map of the route: A Sunday Drive

Though the road is paved you can see how rough it is.

Along the way we were surprised by two of these beauties on one of the few farms along the way.

A grove of Madrone trees were just some of the amazing trees we found. The Rockefeller Redwood grove is much better than The Avenue of the Giants if you ever visit this area.

Along this route we passed through Ferndale, which has more pristine Victorian homes and businesses than I've ever seen. This is just a random sampling; there are many, many more:

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Elk at Fern Canyon

Today we welcome new follower "ain't for city gals". Thanks for joining our blog; we appreciate your support.

Half way through the 8 mile drive to Fern Canyon we began to wonder if it was worth it. The steep, winding gravel road was full of potholes and surprised us three times with streams we had to cross.

Fern Canyon was beautiful but what really made it worth the drive were the Elk.

First we saw this bull with his harem next to the Fern Canyon Creek.

Then we found these two bulls sparring with each other.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Crescent City, Calif.

This morning we welcome new followers Luci and Loree who join us from Oregon. Luci and Loree have their own blog that you can check out here: Life with Luci & Loree

Since we settled in here on the Klamath River I've been trying to get a good photo of our Pelican neighbors in flight with some degree of frustration. I took this photo early this morning but hope to get a better one soon.

Crescent Beach couldn't be more aptly named.

More barking sea lions in The Crescent City Harbor. The Battery Point lighthouse is on a small island in the background.

We timed the tide right (luck) and were able to walk out to the lighthouse.

Later in the day we visited Jedediah Smith Redwood State Park. This was an amazing 7 or 8 mile slow drive through a grove of the biggest trees we've ever seen.

It's really hard to photograph the magnificence of these unbelievable trees; you really do have to be here in person. Are they even more grand in The National Park?