Tuesday
Nov232004

« Day 5: Ferndale/Arcata/Johnson Grove »

Be sure to look at the Treehugger Tour Photo Gallery with great captions to enhance these entries.

Ferndale main street looking rather like a shot from the early 50s and earlier still into the victorian eraFerndaleThis morning I awoke to Kelli exclaiming, "hey, you got your SKY!!!" She was referring to the cold damp sky I had been anticipating all along. It wasn't meant to last however; it was like this in Ferndale, but much of the rest of the day it was clear. It was actually very Sandy Eggo like with a marine layer that was just like home. In fact, this whole trip has seemed more Sandy Eggo than Sandy Eggo does. Anyhow, we had the little breakfast provided at the inn and then headed out to our great northernmost adventure to see the redwood forests. It was relatively little driving today, but a lot of great scenery.

We had to pass through Eureka and Arcata to get to the forested areas we wanted to see. Eureka had a Costco, so we went there to get some photo memory cards bounced to CD so I could erase some of my ever-filling Smart Media cards—the ones that took a scouring of San Diego electronics stores, since these cards are going out of favor. After Costco, we were on our way. Eureka is sort of a seaside version of Santee or Lakeside. There is a good heart to the place, but it seems to have been bitten by the sprawl bug and is plagued by all the stuff we sought to leave in town. So we didn't stay. Next up on the road was Arcata, which was the main town I wanted to see up here, having been told many stories about the place from the people in SD we know who once lived there, and sometimes still do. Actually on this trip we went past Arcata to first go see the big redwoods.

We went to the Lady Bird Johnson Grove just above Orick. There was a one mile trek that we took, along with the ever-present camera and jerky. Well, what will I be able to say about these trees that hasn't already been said? I only wish we weren't going through things so quickly, but this trip was meant to be a cursory pass through a lot of stuff. Hopefully the trees will be there next year or whenever we get back. Maybe we should have stayed longer—Bush will be president for a few years and maybe there won't be any more forests left. :^( Anyhow, the trees and trail were as silent as can be, with only a few fellow hikers and the roar of distant waves. We didn't run into any bears or ticks as far as we know, so it was just us and trees.

On the way up or back from there we stopped by another beach area and took some great pix of the rocks, the pebbly beach, and each other, as well as a single seal perched up on a rock, just taking in the waves. He let us get pretty close so there are some pix of us with Mr. Seal included. Kelli got a good splash trying to flirt with the waves, and spent the rest of the day with wet everything below her knees!

ed and kelli look on at a rock with one sea lion on it. no other rocks or sea lions. bare beach with lovely gravel sand.Then it was back to Arcata to see the town center some, and check out a bunch of shops. I read a chapter in a book about some hiker who had to cut his forearm and hand off in order to escape a boulder that fell on his hand and kept him pinned alone for a week. He had a video camera which he used to create his memorial for whoever would eventually find him, and also which documented his improvised surgery with a Leatherman tool and other hiking supplies. While in Arcata I picked up a bottle of beer from a shop selling imported brews and wines. The bottle was from the Dirty Dick Pub in London. I have a shirt from there. Now I can drink from a Dirty Dick! And later on, I can show off my Dirty Dick! Anyone wanna come see my Dirty Dick?

Arcata was cute, but we really only spent about two hours there instead of two days, but I got a good feel for the little town. I'm not sure I like the unshaven neo-hippies but I like them more than the neo-cons, so I suppose Arcata is a better place to be.

Then we took off back to Ferndale and got dinner at a pizza joint owned by the son of one of our fellow church members down in Sandy Eggo. Tomorrow we leave Ferndale and start on our way south, stopping a few places, but ultimately on the return part of our trip.

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