States

Newport, Oregon and South Beach State Park

We spent 3 weeks in the Newport area where there is tons of stuff to do. I continue to be amazed by the beauty of the Oregon coast and the abundance of awesome things to see and do. This post will only cover the first week.

During our first week we stayed at South Beach State Park. I’ll admit this was not one of our favorite state parks because it was very crowded and noisy. Our site was on the corner of the main road into and out of the campground so there was constant activity right outside the door meaning we had zero privacy while sitting outside.

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The thing this park had going for it though was the location. The beach was only a short 1/4 mile walk down a trail from the campground, and there were very nice paved bike trails.

One evening I checked out the bike trail that goes all the way to the Port of Newport fishing pier just under the beautiful Yaquina Bay Bridge.

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Another evening I got my people to join me on this bike ride and we stopped at the Rogue Brewery for dinner and a tour of the brewery. The tour was really interesting and the kids got to try out some root beer while Chris & I got to try the real stuff.

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The tour guide was very enthusiastic about his job and made the tour very enjoyable. I thought it was cool how they make these barrels.

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Barrel making

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Finished product

Part of the tour included a ride on this little train to go to different buildings. This was especially fun for the kids.

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Riding our bikes back home into the sunset was such a treat!

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The Hatfield Marine Science Center is also near the brewery which we went to on a different day. This is a small science center that is part of Oregon State University and it’s free to get in.

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There was a beautiful display of sea creatures that you can sometimes find in the tide pools in the area. We learned about how you can touch the sea urchins and anemones and the spines will clamp around your finger. It doesn’t hurt, just feels funny.

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Fat Cat had an adventure while we were at South Beach. We decided to take her to the beach one night to watch the sunset. Yeah I know, cats are not fans of going to the beach but for some reason Chris thought it would be a good idea. He wore her around his neck on the way there because she’s not a fan of walking on a leash.

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At one point she was snuggled up under some towels and somehow a dog seemed to know just where she was hiding because the dog ran right up to her to start playing. She leaped into the air and hissed, then arched her back while her hair stood on end. It was quite a site to see!

We stuck around a little bit longer to see the sunset, but I can tell you Fat Cat was not happy and did not settle down to relax again.

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Fat Cat is on alert for any other dogs.

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To show you just how mad she was, I think we drove her to drink!

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She’s considering it.

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Oh no!

Now before anyone gets mad at me for letting my cat drink beer, I’ll let you know that she really didn’t drink any. She just sniffed it, so no worries!

And that was enough adventure for Fat Cat for a while. 🙂

Stay tuned for more fun things to do in the Newport area.

Categories: Oregon | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Salem, Oregon

Have you heard of Amazon Lockers? We’ve been finding them very useful for ordering stuff on the road. Many RV parks/campgrounds will allow us to receive packages, but some don’t. We’re finding most in Oregon don’t so we’ve learned to make use of Amazon lockers. Amazon sets up lockers at various gas stations, grocery stores and other places where you can have your order shipped. Once your order has been delivered you’ll receive an email to let you know it’s in the locker. You can scan the bar code from the email or enter the number on the keypad and your locker opens with your stuff inside. It’s pretty cool, and a very convenient way for us to order stuff on the road.

What does that have to do with Salem, Oregon you ask? Well, we have been staying on the Oregon coast and there are no facilities with Amazon lockers out here. The closest one we could find was in Salem so it gave us an excuse to make a day trip there. Unfortunately the day we ended up going there just happened to be one of the hottest days of the year, a high around 108?? I didn’t realize it gets that hot up here in the PNW! It certainly isn’t hot on the coast; we’ve actually been quite chilly with highs in the 60s for the last few weeks.

Anyway, in spite of the heat we had a great field trip to Salem.

Our first stop was to the Riverfront Park to check out the classic carousel. This park was very nice. There is a playground, a splash park, a brand new bridge, paved bike trails and of course the carousel.

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The carousel is made of hand-carved horses by local volunteers. It is a beautiful carousel and includes a game to catch the brass ring.

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Jake trying to catch the brass ring

The volunteers were there that day carving a new dragon for the carousel. They were so friendly and welcomed us into their studio to watch the artists at work. Check out the detail in the carving and the designs on the wall.

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They have been carving this dragon for over 2 years!

We also got to go into the painting studio to watch where they paint new horses and touch up the paint on older ones.

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The carousel rides are only $1.50 each and the artists gave us some buy one get one free coupons so we rode a few times.

After the Riverfront Park we headed to the Gilbert House Children’s Museum. We were able to get in free because they are part of the ASTC Science Center reciprocal membership program. This museum was incredible! I thought we would only be there for 30 minutes or so because it sounded like it would be too young for my kids, but I was pleasantly surprised that they loved it.

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They spent the first 30 minutes or so in the first room where they pretended to be street merchants selling fruits and vegetables. I kept telling them there were many other things to do at this museum but they didn’t want to leave this first room.

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Main Street Market

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Finally we moved onto the outdoor playground where there is a giant erector set, a giant slide and climbing walls

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As I mentioned before, it was over 100 that day so we didn’t spend much time out there.

Back inside, the kids played in several other areas of the museum that inspire creativity.

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Pretending to be veterinarians.

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Pretending to be a farmer.

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Pretending to be pilots.

There were real airline seats behind them, and Jake made sure I was buckled in for takeoff.

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Putting on a show.

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Pretending to be surgeons.

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Building forts.

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Building a playground.

This museum is named for A. C. Gilbert who was born in Salem in 1884. He created the Erector Set and made the American Flyer train sets famous. He also earned an Olympic gold medal in the pole vault and graduated from Yale with a degree in medicine. Quite an impressive individual! His passion for toys inspired this museum where there are so many opportunities for kids to use their imagination.

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American Flyer train set.

The museum is in 3 separate buildings, and the outside is so colorful and cute!

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We had such a fun day in Salem! Oh yeah, we picked up our Amazon order when we were done exploring and headed back to coast.

Categories: Oregon | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Bend, Oregon

We absolutely loved Bend, Oregon! We spent 2 weeks there at the Bend/Sunriver Thousand Trails and it wasn’t long enough. I was amazed at how many awesome recreational opportunities there are in that area. The Deschutes River is really popular for summertime water activities like kayaking, tubing and river rafting. There are so many parks and bike trails, as well as many places to go hiking. It’s also very dog-friendly; we saw people with dogs just about everywhere, including restaurants. There are even ski resorts nearby for all the wintertime fun you could want. Crater Lake is less than 2 hours away. The weather while we were there in July was very pleasant, although I’ve heard that since we left that area it has gotten quite hot.

During the 2 weeks we were there, we got to spend time with several other Fulltime Families (FtFs). We joined some other families for a field trip to Newberry National Volcanic Monument where we visited Pauline Falls which was gorgeous!

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Pauline Falls

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We also hiked the Obsidian Flow Trail which is a lava flow covered in obsidian and pumice stone. The pumice stone was so light while the obsidian was like black glass and very sharp and slippery. I slipped and fell on it and a couple of others cut their hands on it. You have to be really careful with this stuff!

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Obsidian Rock

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Roadschoolers Rock!

These 3 were inseparable at the campground, playing Minecraft all the time.

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Jake and the 2 Jesse’s

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After the Obsidian Flow we relaxed at one of the lakes where the kids enjoyed playing in the water and kayaking.

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Jake out in the kayak

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Jesse is always up for a game of ball (any kind of ball)

Later that weekend we went back to Newberry to explore some more with Chris. We hiked through a Lava Cave which was really cool, but too dark for pictures. We also hiked the Trail of the Molten Land and the Lava Butte Trail.

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Lava Butte

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Lava Butte

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Trail of the Molten Land

 

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The boys earned Junior Ranger badges here and part of their activities was to interview some of the park rangers.

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The last trail we hiked that day was to Benham Falls.

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There are other areas to explore at this park but we ran out of time. Such a wide variety of places to visit like waterfalls, caves, lava lands, lakes, etc. We really enjoyed this park!

I saved the best for last. Our absolute favorite thing we did while in Bend was tubing down the Deschutes River. We liked it so much we went twice, and also a third time at the Little Deschutes River at our campground. We went with some other FtFs which made it even more fun! On our second trip we had 16 people, and we all made a train by hanging on to each other to go down the rapids together. That was a blast and so funny when some of the group wiped out and fell in, including poor little Jesse. He took it like a champ though!

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We all really liked this house and decided if we wanted to live in Bend we’d like to live there. Just kidding, we couldn’t afford that house, and besides it doesn’t have wheels. I’m not ready to stop traveling and I still want a house on wheels. 😉

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During the week we enjoyed the float down the Little Deschutes at the campground.

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We really enjoyed the time we spent in Bend, and hope to return again someday and stay for much longer!

 

Categories: National Parks, Oregon | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Crater Lake National Park

There are just not words to adequately describe the beauty of Crater Lake; it must be one of the most beautiful places on earth! The water is the bluest blue you ever did see. That moment when I looked over the rim trail and saw it for the first time is something I will never forget. It literally takes your breath away, and these pictures definitely do not do it justice!

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Crater Lake with Wizard Island in the middle

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The rim trail is really fun to stroll along and see the lake from many different angles. After we had our fill of seeing the lake from the rim, we headed out for a hike up the Garfield Peak trail. The trail is 3.4 miles roundtrip, but most of it was still closed due to snow so we were only able to hike about a mile up and back. The views along the hike were stunning!

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Cute little marmot we saw on the trail

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Crater Lake Lodge

The trail to one of the viewpoints looks to have been recently cleared of snow. The snowbanks were so high here and in the parking lot. It’s incredible how much snow falls at Crater Lake every year. We were there in July and some of the roads and trails were still closed! Also, it was surprisingly warm in spite of the snow. It might look funny to see us in shorts with all that snow surrounding us, but it wasn’t cold outside at all.

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Jesse writing in the snow

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Snowball fight in July!

After we hiked and walked around the viewpoints we attempted to go to another area of the park to do another hike, but the traffic and crowds were crazy by this point. We decided to head back to the campground and come back another day.

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We came back in the evening later that week and it was not crowded at all. The first thing we did was stop at the Visitor Center to watch the park movie and let the kids earn their Junior Ranger badges.

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The most popular hike at Crater Lake is the Cleetwood Cove Trail which is the only trail where you can hike down to the lake. It is 2.2 miles roundtrip and includes a strenuous climb back up.

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It was really fun to go down to the lake! We learned in the park movie that the water is some of the purest water, so of course we had to try it.

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Tasting the crystal clear water of Crater Lake

On our way back out of the park we stopped and played in some of the mounds of snow. I still can’t believe how much snow there was in July. I can’t even imagine what it looks like in the winter.

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Crater Lake is so incredible! I really hope I inspired you to go see it, because like I said at the beginning of this post, my pictures do not do it justice. You just have to see it in person.

Categories: National Parks, Oregon | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Chiloquin, Oregon

After we left the Oregon Coast we headed inland somewhat to Chiloquin. This was a good location for visiting Crater Lake National Park. We stayed at Collier Memorial State Park which was nice and woodsy. For the first time since we left Florida we had the right kind of trees at our site to use the slack line kit we got for Christmas. The kids enjoyed this so much for the 2 weeks we were there, and made lots of friends too because all the neighbor kids wanted to come over and play on it too.

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Fat Cat loved this site because there were so many chipmunks to chase!

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Why does she always look so mad?

For a couple of days we had some really nice neighbors that let us borrow their inflatable kayak for the river right behind our site. Now we REALLY want to get one of these!

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The campground had a nice hiking trail along the Williamson River which led to a logging museum which was part of the state park.

The walk along the river was beautiful and the water was so clear!

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Williamson River

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The logging museum was really interesting. You walk through several different areas from different time periods and learn the history of logging in Oregon.

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The boys played in the river one day while Chris tried some fishing. The water was freezing! I’m talking ice cold, instant brain freeze the moment you put your feet in the water cold! Jake was the only one brave enough to go all the way across to the other side of the river.

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Jesse jumped in and jumped right back out!

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Jake yelling about how cold it is.

You can just barely see Jake out in the distance making his way very quickly back across while Chris was fishing.

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One of our favorite things we did in Chiloquin was visiting the Klamath & Western Railroad. On Saturdays they offer free train rides. These are like model train railroads that you can actually ride on. The people that run this really seem to enjoy sharing their hobby with others. I was so impressed with the level of detail along the railroad, the length of the ride which was about 20 minutes long, and that they offer all of this for free! They do however take donations which they certainly deserve. The boys said they felt like we were riding through Grampa’s Christmas village train track while we were there. It was so much fun!

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Of course the highlight of our time and the reason we came here was to visit Crater Lake. But that deserves a post of its own, so please stay tuned.

Categories: Oregon | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Bandon, Oregon

After leaving the Redwoods we traveled up the 101 to the cute little town of Bandon, Oregon. This stretch of Hwy 101 has to be one of the most scenic drives ever. I kept wanting Chris to pull over and stop so I could take pictures. I cannot get over how beautiful the Oregon coast is!

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After several stops along the way we made it to our campground at Bullards Beach State Park. It was so nice to get back to a state park! From what I saw, we couldn’t stay at any state parks in California… every one I looked into had a size limit of 35 feet and we are 41 feet. Anyway, that meant that while we were in CA we had to stay in RV parks. The places we stayed were all nice, but we missed state parks. Oregon has a very impressive selection of state parks and I look forward to staying at as many as possible.

There was a trail behind our site to the beach and every time we walked there we had the whole beach to ourselves.

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Nature trail on the way to the beach

The Coquille River lighthouse is at the state park so we went to check that out one day. It was so cold and windy while we were there so we didn’t stay very long. Actually it was cold and windy for most of the week that we were at this park even though it was June. I guess that’s normal for the coast.

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Coquille River Lighthouse

After getting settled into our site I posted on Facebook where we were and then heard from my good friend Kelli from back home in Florida that she was also in Oregon that week for work. She just so happened to be staying 20 miles north of us! What are the chances? She drove down to see us one evening. It was so nice to see her! I love traveling but I sure miss my friends and family from home so her visit was a real treat.

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There is a lot to do in Bandon! I took the kids on a field trip one day to the West Coast Game Park Safari where you can pet animals that roam throughout the park, and you can also pet baby bears and tigers and other typically dangerous animals during exhibits throughout the day.

We purchased food for the animals as we went in and the deer swarmed us the minute we walked through the gate.

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I loved this donkey, he followed us around the park for awhile.

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The alpacas were really fun to see. They have such a funny look on their faces!

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Jesse and the alpaca making faces at each other.

There were lots of big horn sheep hanging around.

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We got to pet a tiger, bobcat, lynx, fox and bear. They were all so cute! Especially the bear.

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We were even able to hold some of the animals.

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After the Safari Park we headed over to the scenic Face Rock Viewpoint. I’m telling you, the Oregon coast is breathtaking!

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We finished it off with cheese samples and ice cream at the Face Rock Creamery.

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Historic Old Town Bandon is also very cute, but unfortunately I only took one picture. Not sure why I didn’t think to take more!

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We loved our first stop in Oregon and there is so much more to see. I’m so thankful that we will be spending a couple of months in this state. Stay tuned for more incredible scenes from this beautiful part of the country.

Categories: Oregon | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Redwood National and State Parks

Northern California and the Redwoods are incredible! It seems the further north we went in the state of CA the more we liked it. Sorry SoCal folks, don’t hate us but we’re just not fans of traffic and crowds. Once we got up near the Redwoods it was like we arrived in a different state. It was so much less crowded and busy, and people on the roads no longer seemed like they were in such a hurry. Suddenly life slowed down and became more peaceful and relaxed, just the way we like it.

I wasn’t sure if we would like going to the Redwoods so soon after visiting Sequoia, but we really loved it! Even though they are both about big trees, they are so different.

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We spent 2 days exploring this park and the surrounding area. On day 1 we hiked the Big Tree and Lady Bird Johnson Grove trails. When we were in Texas we visited the Lyndon B. Johnson National Historic Park. We learned a little bit about his wife Lady Bird Johnson, and it was fun to see a trail named after her at this park. She loved the Redwoods and was at the dedication of the national park in 1968.

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Hiking among ancient giants

It’s humbling to see how small we are compared to these giant trees.

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Can you see Jesse in this picture?

The next day we drove up to Crescent City to visit the Battery Point Lighthouse. I loved all the purple flowers in bloom… so pretty!

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Next we did another Redwoods hike called Damnation Creek Trail. I’m not sure where they got that name, but it was our favorite hike that we did at this park.

Most of the hike was among the enormous trees. The sun shining down through the trees looked so majestic!

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Banana slug we found along the trail.

After what seemed like a long time of hiking through the woods, we suddenly came to a clearing with this breathtaking view!

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It was so beautiful here! I took way too many pictures and we stayed for a long time. It was very hard to leave this spot!

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Jake loves looking at all the sea life in the tide pools.

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Jake’s collection of snails and mussels.

As much as I hated to leave this place it was time to head back. I still had one more hike for us to do before the end of the day. The hike out of here was tough! The entire hike getting to this point was downhill which means the hike back out was a very hard climb. I wasn’t sure I could convince my people to go on just one more hike after this one, but thankfully they went along with me. 🙂

This was the Yurok Loop Trail which was a short trail with stunning Pacific views.

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By the time we finished all of our fun that day it was too late to get back to the Visitor Center in time to get the kids’ Junior Ranger badges. We went the next morning just before we left the campground to head to Oregon.

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32nd Junior Ranger badges

While visiting the Redwoods we stayed at the Klamath River RV Park. This was a very pretty park right on the river. I loved this view right in front of our camper with the mysterious looking fog.

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I think of all the places we have visited in California, Yosemite and the Redwoods have been my favorite. I can’t say I was sad to leave the state though; I sure don’t miss that traffic! We moved on and headed up to Oregon which is quickly becoming my new favorite state. More on that later.

Categories: California, National Parks | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Visiting Friends in CA Wine Country

My friend Holly flew out from Florida to spend a few days with us in California Wine Country. We stayed in Napa Valley, but didn’t actually go to any wineries there. Instead we visited some amazing wineries in Sonoma thanks to my friend Sue. More on that later.

First we picked up Holly at the Oakland airport and since San Francisco was “sort of” on the way back to our campground in Napa I thought we should really go see the Golden Gate Bridge. If you know us, we avoid large cities like the plague! Since our mode of transportation is a large dually truck we prefer wide open spaces and San Francisco would be the exact opposite of that. I would love to visit that city, but until we are traveling in a smaller car I’m not sure how that’s going to happen.

Anyway, San Francisco being “sort of” on our way back to the campground means about a 2 hour detour if you are at all familiar with California traffic. 🙂

I think it was worth it to see this awesome bridge!

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The next day it was time to visit some wineries! My friend Sue who used to live in Fernandina Beach now lives in CA. I kept telling her we would meet up with her eventually in our travels and it finally happened. She knew I wanted to visit some wineries and she knew of some great ones to take us to in Sonoma. What a blessing Sue was to us that day! I like wine, but I’m not at all familiar with what is good. I mean I typically have wine out of a box in my RV fridge if that tells you anything. Sue took us to 3 great wineries and I have never tasted wine so good before. What a great day we had with her and her daughter and grandson! My kids enjoyed playing with her grandson all day which made it not so boring for them to spend the day visiting wineries. 😉

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Gloria Ferrer Caves and Vineyards

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Jacuzzi Family Vineyards

The next day the kids got to have their fun. We participated in the Six Flags Read-to-Succeed program this year and got free tickets for the kids to go to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in Vellajo, CA. Strangely I realized I hardly took any pictures and I have no pictures of the kids! I guess that’s what happens when I’m hanging out with my friend.

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Chris likes to call everyone a “joker” so this was perfect for him. It happened to be one of our favorite rides that day too!

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The next day we went to the Jelly Belly Factory Tour which was so cool! This was on my bucket list of things to do in CA.

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It’s a self-guided free tour that is very informative. You walk around the entire factory viewing the different stages in the process of creating a Jelly Belly jellybean. At each area there are videos and information plaques to explain what is going on.

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Look at all those jellybeans resting!

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This is where they made assorted bags.

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The pictures in the background are made of Jelly Bellies.

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Sue and her grandson joined us for this also.

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In the gift shop you can sample as many different flavors as you want. They also have really gross flavors like rotten eggs, dirty socks, vomit and some others. Eww! You can buy a game with those flavors mixed in with normal “good” flavors and dare people to try one and they hope they try the right one. This game is called “Bean Boozled” and you just have to hope you’re not the one to pick the wrong flavor. My kids bought a bag of those and have been having fun with it, but I refuse to participate. I do not want to take a chance on eating a jelly bean that tastes like boogers, gross!

On our last day with Holly we went to Point Reyes National Seashore. We didn’t get to explore much of the park because we didn’t realize it would take so long to get there. Again… California! I should know it takes a long time to get anywhere in that state.

There is a lighthouse there that I really wanted to see, but they told us at the Visitor Center that it was a 45 minute drive to get there, which would mean another 45 minutes back to the entrance afterward. Nobody felt like driving that far after the drive we just had so we ended up just going to one of the beach accesses which was beautiful!

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And we got Junior Ranger badges while we were there! The Junior Ranger book is quite long and we didn’t finish it while we were there, but the rangers were kind enough to swear them in as new junior rangers on the honor system that we would complete the book on our own which we did.

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We had so much fun hanging out with Holly and Sue that week! As with all visits with friends, the time went by way too quickly. It was time for Holly to head back home and we moved on to the Redwoods in Northern California. Stay tuned for a post about that later.

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Pacific Coast Highway – Day II

If you missed my post about Day 1 you can see it here: Pacific Coast Highway – Day I.  The next day we headed north of Santa Cruz. Everything we did this day was thanks to the advice of my blogger friend at Weekend Campervanning, and it turned out to be such a fun day!

Our first stop was at Ano Nuevo State Park to see the elephant seals. Wow! So many seals and they make such interesting sounds. Check out my YouTube video below to hear them yourself.

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Beginning of hike to go see the elephant seals; beautiful views along the way!

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So many elephant seals all in one place!

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These seals migrate to this beach twice a year to breed and to molt. At this time of the year they are there to molt or shed their first layer of skin. I found it so interesting that they migrate thousands of miles each year. How do they know to keep coming back to this exact location? Fascinating! I could have literally sat there and watched these animals all day long, but after about an hour or so my people were getting anxious to move on to something else.

Our next stop was at Bean Hollow State Beach to check out the tide pools which were very cool!

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On the way back down towards Santa Cruz we stopped at a couple of beautiful view points. Notice how some pictures have clear, blue skies while others are foggy? It’s very strange how we can drive just a few miles down the road and the skies go from completely foggy to clear!

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Our last stop was at Swanton Berry Farm to pick fresh, organic strawberries. Yummy!

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While we were in this area we stayed at the Santa Cruz/Monterey Bay KOA campground. This was a very expensive campground and not what we normally spend, but it seems everything in this part of California is expensive so we had to splurge. This KOA though is one of the nicest we have ever been to. Our campsite had a deck/patio in back, a great place to relax! The activities for kids at this place were awesome! The kids loved the bounce pad the best.

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The pool was under construction, but it was too cold when we were there anyway so we didn’t mind that it wasn’t open yet. They had a very nice playground, mini golf, a climbing wall and scheduled activities each day including bingo which we loved.

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One of the scheduled activities included a hole-in-one contest at mini golf that Jesse won. His prize was a free bike rental so we tried out the four-seater bike to ride around the park.

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We enjoyed our stay at that KOA so much and really enjoyed visiting the nearby areas along the Pacific Coast. After we left there we went to stay at a Thousand Trails park for free for 2 weeks to offset the cost. 😉 I know, it’s not technically free since we had to buy the membership to Thousand Trails, but if we stay at enough of those parks throughout the year it really makes camping cheap, and helps to offset the more expensive places we go.

 

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Pacific Coast Highway – Day I

If you read my last post about Yosemite, you might remember I mentioned our unfortunate truck incident that turned out to be a blessing because of the rental car we were able to use to drive the scenic Pacific Coast Highway. After Yosemite we headed to the coast to visit the areas of Monterey Bay and Santa Cruz. These areas are pretty congested with lots of traffic and tight parking spaces so we were pretty happy to have a smaller car for this!

On day 1 we explored from Monterey south on Highway 1 until we couldn’t go any further due to road closures.

Our first stop was at the Dennis the Menace park in Monterey. The boys loved this! What a unique and fun playground!

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Then we headed on down to the 17-mile drive through Pebble Beach. It costs $10 to drive this scenic drive, but if you stop and eat at a restaurant along the way you will get that back. We didn’t stop though because as you can imagine restaurants in this area are quite pricey. $10 off wouldn’t have made much difference.

The first part of the drive was very foggy! It was hard to see much of the ocean. There are several viewpoints along the drive to stop and take pictures.

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One area had some nice tide pools to explore.

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Once we got to the Lone Cypress tree viewpoint, the fog cleared a little bit so we could see the beautiful blue water of the Pacific. This was definitely the prettiest stop along the drive.

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Our next stop was at Carmel-by-the-Sea, a cute little town with lots of shops and restaurants. We had planned to find a place to eat lunch there. We walked around for over an hour checking out restaurants and could not find a single place with reasonable prices for lunch so we ended up just getting some sandwiches at a market/deli and continuing on our way.

Then we drove down Hwy 1 and stopped at many vista points to admire the view and take pictures. The fog would come and go along the way, and in some ways the fog made things look more mysterious.

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Looking down over the ocean covered in a thick layer of fog was a really cool site to see. It was kind of like being in an airplane looking down at the clouds below you. The fog just hovered over the water.

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Our last stop was Point Lobos State Park. The fog cover was so thick there we weren’t able to see much.

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Pretty eerie look with all the fog, don’t you think?

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The next day we drove north to Santa Cruz and beyond to see elephant seals and more. Stay tuned…

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