Monday, May 1, 2017

Epic Road Trip Day 4

Thursday and how lovely not to have to pack up to change hotels: one of the advantages of not being able to continue along the coast. We headed North from Eureka to see Lady Bird Johnson grove and finally take a walk amongst the redwoods.

park entrance

The Pacific Ocean

Map of the Lady Bird Johnson trail

The measure of the trees

Even linking hands my sister and I don't make it

A Trillium - many different colors

More wildflowers in the forest

Moss along the limbs

At almost 1 p.m. we were then off to view elk on the beach, passing through Elk meadow. We had seen some earlier but it was getting warmer so they had disappeared into the surrounding woods. It was 4 miles to the beach on an unpaved road, then along that another couple of miles headed for Fern Canyon, but were stopped in our tracks by a river.

With a low Impala we couldn't take the chance so didn't see Fern Canyon
 Just as well since we had re-arranged the day and were going North in the morning and South to Founder’s Grove and Rockefeller Grove in the afternoon- meeting up with one of my high school classmates and his wife, and were running behind (now why does that astonish me? Par for the course on this trip). Did take a walk on Gold Bluffs Beach where I picked up rocks and driftwood. This won’t totally compensate for missing Mendocino but such is life. Then headed back this time measuring the distance – total 6 miles on dirt road with major potholes. Glad to have the sturdier car!

The ocean from Gold Bluffs Beach
We were only an hour late arriving at Founder’s Grove. Great to meet up with my classmate: his life has been about as topsy turvy as mine! He was a great source of info about the redwoods as after being a pastor he went into ecology! He explained a lot of the typology of both Founder’s Grove and Rockerfeller grove.

Left: needles from lower on the tree, Right: shorter sturdier needles from the top

The partial measure of Founder's Tree

 A lot of trees have fallen in Rockerfeller Grove though and the last one fairly recent as the hole the stump came out of the ground was still totally intact without any debris: came away from the tree having patted it and saying RIP. I was so sad. Weird, but then they have discovered that trees do talk to each other.  
Looking down the fallen tree

The stump and its' hole

Bull River and fallen trees - bridge down

I am a tree hugger - and he was small!
We then decided to have dinner together, settling on Ferndale so that they wouldn’t have to drive so far (back up to Eureka). We checked Ivanhoe’s but there was an 80th party in the bar and no room in the restaurant so we wandered over to the “lesser” rated Victorian Inn and had the most scrumptious meal with a great waiter, Ryan. I had a cup of clam chowder (with bits and stuff) followed by a half rack of baby spare ribs. Everything anyone had looked absolutely perfect and there was silence for several minutes. We also cracked for dessert. I had the fresh raspberry sherbet – one of my more glorious experiences.

My dinner at the Victorian Inn in Ferndale, CA
We headed back to Eureka arriving at 9 p.m. and falling into bed, happy but exhausted. 
This Road Trip is tiring.