We arrived in Crescent City, just over the OR/CA border to rain! I didn’t think it rained in California! Checked into the Shoreline RV Park with a spot right on the bulkhead facing the Pacific Ocean. Quite a view, but we didn’t see much of it due to heavy fog and rain. Wild to know there is ocean right in front of you but you can’t see it. We knew it was there though due to the lighthouse foghorn going off every 8 seconds and the sea lions that barked 24/7. We drove into town to the visitor center to get the scoop on Redwood State/National Park. This is the first time at any park headquarters that we have had someone who was rude and not helpful. We grabbed the maps and info and got out of there. We kenneled in for the night as it was an absolute downpour!
The next day, we did a few scenic drives into the Redwoods (the State and National parks here act as one and it isn’t always clear which part you are actually in). We did a short hike and saw some humungous trees. Theses giants are over 300 feet tall and 1,500 years old. Wowza! Came back to the MoHo and actually had a break in the weather so did a nice walk out on the beach. Another mellow night at home, cooking and catching up on some TV.
Saturday morning we were up and out on our way south. This caused a dilemma for Mike as he wasn’t able to watch the Husky game. He downloaded some app, so he could listen on the drive. Not much of a game – they beat Idaho State 56-0 (The Cougs also won their game to Idaho 42-0). We drove through Klamath (home to the huge Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox statues – I think I saw this when I was a child, but can’t remember) and Eureka where we fueled up. Lots of interesting folks in this town, “coasties” as they have been referenced by others to us. Our destination was Benbow RV and Golf Resort in Garberville, CA. A great spot to stop, but unfortunately the rain continued. When we checked in they offered a free coupon at the neighboring Benbow Inn, a national historic site, for complimentary tea and scones. We took full advantage then decided to BBQ and stay put for the night. I did much needed laundry at the clubhouse and we started the Bourne series.
We had a lazy Sunday morning and did something we haven’t done this entire trip. We hunkered down for the day and watched football and worked on upcoming itinerary planning since we had good wi-fi. It felt a little odd not leaving “the house” but this is something we would have totally done at home on a given Sunday especially since the weather wasn’t great. I did go for a walk, but other than that, we were pretty lazy and it felt great! The next day, we went out to explore more of the Redwoods on the “Avenue of the Giants” drive. Some of the largest redwoods in the region including “Giant Tree” at 363 feet tall and 53 feet wide and estimated at 1,600 years old. We stopped at the local grocery on the way back to the MoHo to get fixins for BBQ burgers and our newest favorite, grilled peppers (red, orange, yellow with a bit of olive oil seared on the Q for a few minutes)!
Tuesday morning it was off to the coast and the much anticipated Highway 1 (aka, the one). As we approached the turnoff from Highway 101, we noticed a sign that said ‘RV’s over 40 feet prohibited.’ Our MoHo is 40 feet, but with the toad, we are 65 feet. Good Lord, how did we not know this? We pulled over and got on the horn to CHP (non-emergency). After getting passed to many different people, we finally talked to someone in the know and he advised we were legal, but it would be very windy and hilly and it wasn’t a good idea if we weren’t comfortable. Well, what do you think we did? Of course Mike is comfortable, so off we went. It took us 3 hours to drive 60 miles and it was the most stressed I have been on the road so far. You better bet Sofia Coppola made an appearance. Mike did great, but I know it took a lot of concentration. The worst part is that we get a stack of other cars behind us and there aren’t many pullouts to let them pass. Although extremely stressful, it was a gorgeous drive especially once we got out along the ocean with the steep, rugged cliffs and crashing waves of the Pacific below. Our home for the next 3 nights is in Albion just south of Mendocino. We are at the Albion River RV Park (we are 1 of 2 RV’s here in a park that holds 120 – I guess we are in off-season) and looking forward to some wine tasting and kayaking on the Albion River!