One of my graduation presents was to take a 6-day road trip to San Francisco with my mom, ending in Sunriver where we would join my brothers and Dad for the 4th of July. Here's my recap, with lots of pictures and travel comics! :D
Day 1: We departed from Portland early on the morning of Sunday, June 27, drove down I-5 and then through the northern half of the Redwoods, and ended the day at Trinidad in northern California.
We stopped to look at the trees and also to take a hike to Fern Canyon, which is basically this creek with 50 foot canyon walls on both sides, and those sheer cliff faces are covered in pretty, leafy ferns!
If you ever happen to stay in Trinidad, the Trinidad Bay Bed and Breakfast is an A+ in my and my mom's books.
We got a delicious dinner at a restaurant called...Moonshine?...and took a walk on the beach to walk off its effects.
Day 2: We woke up at the crack of dawn to get to the beach in time for a -1 low tide. It was really hard to get out of that bed, oh man...but the tide pools were worth it. I've always loved poking through them, catching crabs and little fish and things.
Mom is ridiculously active and healthy, and she insisted upon a hike once or twice every day of the trip. We took a pretty one over a hill right on the Trinidad coast to see an old lighthouse. At the farthest point on the loop, we could hear the seals barking right below us. So cool!
(This could be anywhere with that fog-white background, but this is at the highest point of the hike!)
We left the B&B right after cleaning up around noon. We drove through the Avenue of Giants, which I TOTALLY recommend if you've never been. It's all very cheesy, American road trip stuff, but it's a cliche stop for a reason. Those trees are...well, huge. And the high canopy creates this soft, muffled quiet in the forest. It's really breath-taking! I loved it!
We got into San Francisco around 7, and since we weren't coming from I-5, we got to enter the city via the Golden Gate Bridge! Literally the only thing on my list of things I really wanted to do in SF was seeing the GGB, since I've been to the city twice and only seen it from a great distance once. We walked around the blocks near Union Square and drank wine and ate chocolates in our room.
(This happens all the time and I am used to it, but the poor guy felt really bad for making that mistake!)
Day 3: We shopped all morning, had lunch at a Bistro on Maiden Lane that Mom remembered eating at when she visited the city at my age. Cool! They even had the same portobello mushroom sandwich that she remembered getting :P We saw Chinatown, a church, a park, and ate dinner near the bay at Bin 3...38? Yummy, but pretty pretentious. This is the only photo that I took on day 3:
(This kind of sums up the evening. I've never had more than a couple of light drinks with my mom, and have to say it was really, really fun to get tipsy and talk until we collapsed from exhaustion.)
Day 4: We went to a couple of stores in the morning to make purchases we'd been thinking on, and then we packed up and checked out of our hotel. We drove to Height and Ashbury and Castro on our way out of the city and walked around a bit. Then it was on to Ashland, and a full evening of driving. Shasta was GORGEOUS, and the mountain pass that was so treacherous to Emi, Angie, and me in April was kind this time around.
We got into Ashland pretty late. There was a problem with the hotel room, and we ended up in a crazy-nice suite with a bathroom the size of the rooms I'm used to staying in. We had a jacuzzi tub and we each spent a good half hour in it. SO nice after that long drive.
Day 5: We had to move rooms in our Ashland hotel, and I bid a sad farewell to the jacuzzi tub. Mom and I saw Pride & Prejudice performed at the main Ashland theater (fantastic), walked around town, had Greek food for lunch and Japanese food for dinner. We also walked the Lithium Park trails until nightfall. What a wonderful park!
Day 6: We took it easy in the morning and left Ashland around 11. We drove up to Grant's Pass to get my brother, Nick, from his summer job on the Rogue River and take him with us to Sunriver for the weekend.
We took a route that allowed us to stop at Crater Lake, which my mom felt horrible for never taking her kids to before, haha. It was beautiful! This whole trip was just a series of beautiful landscapes across Oregon and northern California. Beautiful, beautiful places abound.
(Freezing. 39 degrees.)
(I asked Nick if his hat stood for Walgreens. Nope.)
In Sunriver, Neil and I got some rare time to hang out. It's hard when we're in Portland...he is very social, and I can't get him away from his friends, his phone, or the x-box for more than 5 minutes at a time. I mean, he's 15, so I don't expect great communication...but I want to know my brothers! It was great to bike around Sunriver, search for frogs, do yard work, and whatever else with him.