Monday, July 31, 2017

Oregon Road Trippin' Day 2

July 7, 2017

Our morning started in Petaluma where we found some awesome lattes and breakfast options.  Here Macy decided that she needed to pin everything on Pinterest Chia Seed related because she happened to have a bite of my Chia pudding for breakfast.  She is now a Chia Pudding chef, in case anyone would like to try.

Our first stop was Glass Beach near Fort Bragg.
For obvious reasons, Glass Beach doesn't have that much glass anymore.
It hasn't clicked for you yet?
Let me explain.

In 1906 it was Fort Bragg's dump site.
People could dump everything...even their cars.
When it got big, they would burn it, but the glass remained among other things.
If you are lucky enough to find a "rare ruby red" it's because you're finding some car
tail lights.  You can take the glass, just not any stones.

It became MacKerricher State Park in 2002 after undergoing a major cleanup effort.
If you go, don't get fussy that there aren't really big pieces many people
have visited that there just isn't much left.
Take a picture.
It will last longer.

 Please pardon the dirty car window.

Lunchtime was upon us, and we happened to be outside of Humbolt, so we stopped in Loleta at Queso Kings located inside the Loleta Cheese Factory in this amazing little town. It delighted me down to my toes.

Cheese. (and FREE SAMPLES!)
Just kidding.
How rude. (Make sure you say that like Stephanie Tanner from Full House)
Beautiful garden.
The gardener happened to be there and answered my every question about the plants he tends to.
He was so knowledgeable, friendly, and clearly very proud of the grounds he tends to weekly.

 These delights are called "Fried Egg" flower.  They were as big as my hand. Stunning.

If you happen to pass through Loleta, it would be smart of you to eat here.
Especially if you like cheese.

So we kept driving north, because up next was something that has been on my bucket list (read; Pinterest bucket list...because pinning is easy) for a few years now.
 I've been eyeing the trees of Shady Dell. It's not always been open to the public, but a conservancy recently purchased the land and has made it open for walking the trails and taking pictures.  Obviously, you can imagine my delight during my pinning and planning stages when I realized this was on the way.  I just KNEW it was going to be a highlight of the trip.  Pinterest said it was beautiful, and Pinterest is NEVER wrong.
San Francisco Gate posted this picture, and it's been sitting in my "bucket list file" for a long time.
Photo by San Francisco Gate

It's gorgeous, right? 
Candelabra redwoods...... I wanted my picture to look just like that too.
It looks spiritual and nature-y, and dang if that wouldn't be an awesome profile pic to have.
Amma right?

So we followed the directions to get to Shady Dell.
And the lady on my map directions said something like, "If you proceed on the highlighted route, please check other sources as this is not a verified route..." I'm paraphrasing but you get the idea.
So maybe if I had a mo-ped, or felt like WALKING for 6 miles, I would actually HAVE a profile picture with me under the candelabra trees.  
But I don't.
Here's why:

THIS is a one lane, dirt road with blind corners, unkempt trees, steep drop offs, and a recipe for stress diarrhea. Steve kept looking over at me, "Joni, should I keep going?"  My mouth hanging open, hoping for a clearing to see what we were headed into...defeat creeping into my soul....I was speechless.  "Joni, should I keep going?"....."UGH! I dunno! Crap Steve, I think the road is getting narrower, what if another car comes down?  Is this even right? What about my TREEEEEEES?"

So, we pulled over, did a 1,000 point turn, and lo and behold another truck comes barreling down the mountain.  Steve followed him out while we scratched the sides of the car up because of oncoming traffic. 
Bucket List FAIL.

We did however proceed on the highlighted route towards Oregon.  We saw some beautiful trees and landscape along the way.  While they weren't candelabra shaped, they were gorgeous none-the-less.
Note to those of you traveling to Oregon via the 101 North, be prepared to stop for copious amounts of time due to road construction.  Apparently the heavy rains from this past year were really hard on the roads and they are in major repair mode resulting in significant delays.

We were pretty tired so we crossed a few destinations off the list so that we could make it to Gold Beach before dark.

We stayed at Ireland's Rustic Lodges.
I highly recommend staying here, despite what the Trip Advisor says.
Super quaint cottages and rooms nestled right against the beach.
It wasn't terribly busy, and the management was so nice.
It's no Hilton, in kinda feels like you're staying at Grandma's house, and we felt right at home there.


 The beach was insanely windy, super cold, and the sand made me feel like my legs were bleeding from the exfoliation.  This is why there isn't a single picture of us chilling on the beach in our lounge chairs that we packed reading a book. NO THANK YOU.

We ate dinner at an eatery called "Behind the Red Door."
Their lavendar lemonade was a hit.
I was smitten with their decor and free games for Z to play.
The food was okay.
I had ling cod tacos...ehhhh
Macy had meatloaf that she kinda hit and miss.

These are fried ravioli appetizers.
I like regular ravioli's better.

The night ended with "resort hot-tubbing".... Zach cracks us up because ever since our trip to Loreto, Mexico where we stayed at a "legit" resort...Zach calls any and every hotel/motel we stay at a resort.  Motel 6 included.  Steve and I giggle every time he asks, "Is there a pool at our resort?"

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