11/17/17 – 12/1/17
Point Reyes National Seashore
Heading towards San Francisco, we stayed at Olema Campground near the coast and about an hour north of San Fran, we spent a few days exploring the beautiful Point Reyes National Seashore. The lighthouse features 300-stairs, which is a thigh-burning workout, and the view is well worth the effort. We went to Limantour Beach, McClures Beach, Cypress Tree Tunnel, Elephant Seal Overlook, and Chimney Rock for sunset. Definitely one of the most beautiful coastal areas in the country!
Alyssa was happy to learn that her college friend, Lianna, was visiting San Francisco while we were in the area so we went into the city to meet her for dinner. Beforehand, we went to the Golden Gate Park and walked through a few sections of the San Francisco Botanical Garden. Alyssa and Lianna enjoyed a Japanese dinner while Bob and I went out for Italian food.
The next day, Bob and Alyssa explored the Muir Woods area. I had a down-day since I was feeling sick. They drove along a very, very, very windy road and hiked all day. To see Alyssa’s photo’s from that day, go to:
On 11/22, we moved near the Sacramento area and stayed at the Cal Expo RV Park. With no food in the house we decided to have dinner out. Harry’s Café was highly rated on Yelp so we tried it out. So happy we did because it was great! All the regulars knew the owner Harry who greeted and served everyone in the small restaurant. On the menu was his famous “flu soup” which is claimed to cure your cold ailments. Still feeling stuffy and under the weather, I coughed and placed my order with Harry. He could tell I needed special care so he brought me a hot cup of water with lemon. So nice! The big bowl of soup arrived piping hot with lots of veggies, chicken, and broth. It also had a shot of hot sauce in it and before I was ½ way through, my sinuses were clearing. Bob and Alyssa enjoyed noodle dishes and we all left full and happy that we met Harry.
Thanksgiving Day was bittersweet being away from family but we made the best of it and cooked some of our favorite dishes. No big turkey since there is not an oven in the motorhome and I wasn’t brave enough to try cooking it in the convection/microwave. So it was chicken marsala with cheesy potato pie, green beans, and bok choy. The best part was dessert, that Alyssa made, chocolate torte with Bailey’s and raspberries. OMG, so delicious!!!
California’s Capitol Building in Sacramento was fun to explore. The architecture was very nice and a few rooms were devoted to archival botanical and wildlife books and documents like President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation. One of the walls hung portraits of California’s Governors, Ronald Reagan, Arnold Schwarzenegger and others. Nearby was State Capitol Park with beautiful gardens. Rose beds and Strawberry Trees filled the park.
Old Town Sacramento, a renovated old-western style town, with shops, restaurants, and the Santa-Fe railroad trains, transports to you to another time!
Back at the RV campground, we enjoyed watching horse harness racing at the Cal Expo Center that we could see from the roof of our motorhome. One night we went over to see the action and were amazed to watch the horses’ gate as they ran around the track. The next day, we met our RV neighbors when they accidentally locked their keys in their trailer when they stepped out for a minute. They didn’t have their cell phones either so asked if we could call a locksmith. We happily helped them out and invited them in for a drink while waiting for assistance. The locksmith arrived and for $100 used a special tool to unlock their trailer. We all learned that an extra key somewhere outside the home is a good idea.
We really enjoyed the Crocker Art Museum, which was once a mansion of Judge Edwin B. Crocker. An additional gallery building was added in 1872 for the family’s growing art collection featuring California artists and international ceramics. Dinner that evening was at Ju Hachi Japanese restaurant.
Moved camp south to Greenfield and staying at Yanks RV Resort. A very nice place with good WiFI, pool/hot tub, and exercise room.
Pinnacles National Park – 11/29/17
Not many people have heard of Pinnacles but in 2013, President Obama redesignated the monument to a National Park. Featuring towering rock spires, oak woodlands, and talus caves. Not formed from limestone like most typical caves, talus caves are the result of falling boulders and rocks into narrow canyons. Day 1 we drove to the West side of the park and hiked the Juniper Canyon Loop trail. It was a strenuous 4.3 miles to the High Peaks through the rock formations along steep and narrow sections down to the Tunnel Trail. The downhill was much more fun than the uphill and the caves were very cool to walk through. Definitely needed a flashlight but our cell phone light worked fine.
On day 2 we drove to Pinnacles East Side and took an easy hike to Bear Gulch Cave and the reservoir. Nice walk but part of the cave was closed due to Townsends’ big-eared bat activity.
12/1/17 On Alyssa’s 23rd birthday we went to Monterey Bay for the afternoon. At 3:00 she joined a group for horse-back riding at Salinas River State beach. She had hoped to gallop in the waves however the beginners group only allowed her to enjoy a leisurely ride along the beach. Even though, she was happy to have some pony-time!
The celebration continued with a sushi dinner at Samurai Japanese Restaurant in Salinas. Their sushi names were very clever and of course we had to order the “Alyssa roll.”
Overall, a very nice day … or so it seemed … later that evening Alyssa started feeling bad with a stomachache. It got progressively worse, then we realized she probably got food poisoning since she was violently ill for over 5 hours. After calling our medical hotline and speaking to a nurse at 3 a.m. she advised us to bring her to an Emergency Room since she wasn’t getting any better. We drove about 20 minutes to the closest ER and luckily no one was waiting before us. Alyssa was given IV-fluids and anti-nausea meds and slowly started feeling some relief. It was a very L O N G night and when we got home we all slept the rest of the day. Definitely a birthday we won’t forget!!!