"Two roads diverged in a yellow wood... And sorry I could not travel both. I took the one less traveled by. And that has made all the difference." --Robert Frost

Friday, July 31, 2020

July 2020 Northern California Loop

Northern California
July 2020

We spent July making a loop through Northern California.  After Napa, we headed to the Russian River area.

Cloverdale, CA
Thousand Trails
There weren't too many sites that would fit a larger rig so we were happy to get A9.  It had a lot of room on our door side but it did have a steep drop off to watch out for. Cell was just ok.
This area is full of wineries and breweries.
The chain used for this driveway was huge.
There are also many dairies as this is prime cheese making country!

We are heading to the coast for some ocean kayaking at Bodega Bay. The fog came and went.

Funny story.  While we were launching there was a couple fishing next to us.  He cast out his new pole and set it down in the rocks.  WHAM!  He hooked something big and before he could get to the pole it flew out in the water!  He was not happy!  He was hoping the fish broke the line and he could snag the pole with a large treble set up.  Good luck with that!
While we paddled back in the more protected area there were some very large seals.  Look at the length of the guy in the above pic.  This fisherman thought it was funny to throw some bait our way.  In the video you can see how close he came to us!  Not really cool, dude.
The seal video is here but might only be viewed from a PC.  Blogger is having a problem.
A fixer upper?
This is Bodega Bay RV Resort.  Many of their sites back right up to the water.
Catching some rays!

It was a gorgeous day paddling the bay.  We saw so much wildlife.  We worked up an appetite and hoped we could find a dock to pull up alongside for some late lunch.  No way to get up the dock so we loaded up the kayak and drove over.

Steve had the Clam Chowder and Crab Sandwich while I had some Garlic Shrimp. SO GOOD!
I almost forgot to mention - when we pulled the kayak out that guy came by and showed us his pole that he snagged and actually got back!

A day drive along the coast is full of beautiful, nonstop views.

This would be THE perfect campsite.  If camping was allowed.  I'm sure they just set it up for a picnic or day use.  Gorgeous view!
Where the Salmon Creek meets up with the Pacific Ocean.

One brewery Steve really wanted to visit was Lagunitas.  One of his favorites.  Luckily they were open and you were allowed to eat in the patio.  They only allowed one group per table and we were all spaced out.

The beer was great and the food, WOW!  His burger was quite a stack!  My Cobb Salad, while served in a dog bowl (new I hope!) was delicious!  So much avocado and bacon!

Stop #2.  Bear Republic.

The Russian River Brewery was HUGE!  They just rebuilt it and it has a large restaurant and outdoor seating area.
This guy was dressed up for the holiday.

Our spoils from the day.  Even something for Jaxon.  It said Tiny Pliny on the front and Half Pint on the back.  Papa and Daddy love Pliny the Young and Elder.

There are several lakes around but not many with access.  We kayaked on Lake Sonoma.  It's a large lake and we were on the busier end of the lake where the power boats hang out.
The winds kicked up on the big lake and turned up the shore.  Hurley loved it but as the waves got larger we decided to head back.

As our kayak came out I ooowed and ahhhed over this blast from the past going in.  This old Drag Racing boat reminded me of our days growing up camping and boating on Lake Berryessa.  On Saturday's the Drag Racing boats showed up.  We loved the fancy paint jobs and listening to them start up the loud, powerful motors.

Eureka, CA
Eureka Elks Lodge
As we leave behind Wine Country we head into the tall Redwood Forests to get to our next destination.
This is a very nice lodge on the end of town with a small, tight but very clean RV section.  #13, $30 W/E.  We seem to be bouncing back and forth in the temperatures.  Very warm 80s inland, but much colder along the coast with 50s.  We'd hoped to kayak in Arcata Bay or Humboldt Bay but it was too windy and cold.
We took a drive over to the Samoa Penninsula enjoying a beachwalk and the farms along the way.
Miles of beach and almost no one out here.

Many shells along the waters edge.

Downtown Eureka has beautiful old homes.
Steve really wanted to visit Lost Coast Brewing but it was closed.
The jewel of Eureka is the Carson Mansion.  It is a four story, 18 room home with a tower and basement.  It took 10 years to build and was finished in 1885. William Carson came out to look for gold but made his fortune in redwood timber.
Around the mansion fence you can find these whimsical  paintings.

Across the street is another beautiful mansion that you can rent.

Berta's Ranch Covered Bridge: This 52' long historic covered bridge was built in 1936 and is located across the Elk River south of Eureka.  Nearby is an almost twin, the Elk River Covered Bridge.

It was a nice time along the coast, now back to the oven!  In just 4 hours we'll be at my sisters and the temps will go up 60 degrees in our 4 hour drive!

After crossing the Trinity River you'll drive pass the beautiful Whiskeytown Lake.  Much like Shasta, but smaller.  We used to camp at Whiskeytown also.

Cottonwood, CA
Once at my sisters, we parked the rig out front but stayed in her house as we could only run an extension cord to keep the fridge going.  Oh boy it's going to be a HOT week!
Kris lives in a lake community and they put on a 4th of July Boat Parade and Firework Show.

My sister Kris and Moi.
Hurley and Phoebe kicking back in the air conditioning.
Steve had to work and we didn't want to bother him so Kris and I went to Lewiston Lake for some fishing.  It's more of a wide spot in the Trinity River.  

It was a beautiful day but we couldn't catch a single thing!  Not even a bite!
Even though the water is ice cold from the snow melt, the temperature of nearly 110 was catching up with us.  We hugged the shoreline to catch some of the only shade and just couldn't stand it any more.  Time to head back.  Oh well.  What's that saying, The worst day fishing is better than the best day working!  We had a great time visiting and fishing off her dock, cooking and drinking!

Oregon House, CA
Thousand Trails
This is a pretty big campground.  It starts out up on the hilltop, then drops down to the lake.  We choses the upperloop for the quiet, views and some of the only Verizon.  #I48, W/E/Dump.
It was a narrow spot but it turned out great.  It was very pretty and since most of the electric boxes were not functioning, we had most of the loop to ourselves.
We did some kayaking on the lake back to the river inlet.  No one else came back this far.  We saw so many ducks, geese, cranes and otters.
See the cute otter video above.  Again, if you can't see it, view it on a PC instead of your cell phone.

This young deer had what looked like wattles hanging below his ears.  Never saw this before.
We also met some new friends from RVillage, Ellen and Randy.  Before the Airstream they sailed.
Rick came up for dinner one night but we forgot to get a picture.  There were some gorgeous nights before we headed back to Placerville to visit my parents and Steve wanted to do a front brake job on the truck.

Coloma, CA
Thousand Trails

It's been a brutal summer in California.  My friend from San Jose wanted to come up for some mountain hiking.  I'm in!  
Chris and I headed up to one of my favorite hikes, Shealor Lake, in the Sierra's.  Instead of 100s, it's a nice 70 up here. Ahhhh.
Silver Lake to the south viewed from the trail.
Up at the saddle with the famous Bristlecone Tree before dropping down to Shealor Lake.

The small lake viewed from each end.  This is a nice, moderate 3.5 mile hike at about 7500' elevation.

Our friends Mike and Rose came up for a visit.  With Covid we are not having inside visits.  With it being so hot, still in the 90s in the early evenings, we decided to skip dinner and have a late dessert and campfire.  Rose made her special homemade Pineapple Upside Down Cake.  It was amazing!
It was still crazy hot so we skipped the campfire and Steve and Rose took a swim in the freezing American River. Mike and I sat on a boulder and cooled our feet off.  We're not that brave.

Another night Doug and Deanna came up.  Tacos outdoor and cooling off in the river after.
Social distancing.
My spot in the river.  

Nice and cool!
Before we head to Southern California for the next 2 months we will go visit the Meatball!  Jaxon is 3 months old.  That is a special age in South Korean culture.  He is wearing gold rings and bracelets which are customary and given to him from Diana's parents.