We are trying to squeeze as much action and fun out of the West Coast as we can before we move to our next location! Read on to see what we were up to this past weekend! Also, the lack of posting is due to an Emergency Room visit and the fact that it now takes me 3x the amount of time to do anything thanks to the reason for the ER visit which you will find out about in this post!
    PS. All pictures expand if you click on them! Enjoy!

Highway 1

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    We thoroughly enjoyed taking scenic Highway 1 up to Mendocino, although we were not expecting the cattle crossing signs to be real! Two curves later and there was a cow in the middle of the road in the opposite lane. As my husband sped past I realized he didn't notice - right as I was about to say something, he started slowing down, in awe that a baby cow was that close to the road. We both found it amusing that there is a fence on the side of the highway 5' from the road to keep them from going to the ocean! Wouldn't it make more sense to just put one fence on the opposite side to keep them from both the highway and the ocean?! Despite the fact that it takes almost double the time, Highway 1 is worth the drive! Most of it is right along the coast with beautiful sights of the ocean! It was so fun to drive up as the sun was setting over the ocean!

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Beautiful sunset in the coastal town of Gualala, California. I love saying that now!

Mendocino

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    I was beyond impressed with my husband's choice for a Bed and Breakfast! The MacCallum House Inn was so charming, and only a block from the beautiful beach! I love historical sights so it was fun for me to be able to read about the history of the house we stayed in as we waited to be seated for dinner in the main floor restaurant.
    Dinner was excellent! As we indulged in our banana split dessert including Tahitian Vanilla Bean and Irish Coffee House Made Ice Cream, candied nuts, and pomegranate, a live band played "A Horse With No Name" - a song my dad use to play for me as a child that I was able to completely impress my husband by knowing all the words to the chorus. Thanks, dad, you're the coolest.

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    Our room was fresh, clean, and airy, and complete with our own private 'water closet' and sink area. Please note that the bed was not that wrinkled when we got there! We arrived at night so I did not take pictures until the next morning when it was light - and the bed had already been slept in! I loved the antique furniture, my favorite piece being the dresser!
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     Breakfast was also incredible, and although it's hard to tell in the picture, you could see a glimpse of the beach directly out the windows! The light coming in through the beautiful glass windows was so refreshing! Breakfast is also where the funniest part of the weekend took place:
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    My husband and I both ordered coffee. As a hygienist, I try to steer away from drinking things with straight sugar in them [minus Chick-fil-A's glorious Sweet Tea]. Noticing that there were only sugar cubes on the table, I gestured to that area as I asked the waitress if they had any other sweeteners. They did and she brought them over. The next thing I know, I look up and Tyler is dumping salt into his coffee. Through tears of laughter I managed to get out, "What are you doing?! That's salt!!" His response, "Oh. Well, I saw you motion to this area about sugar, I looked over I saw sugar, cinnamon sugar [the pepper] and a bowl of croutons."
    While he later admitted that he knew the "croutons" were sugar cubes, it doesn't make up for the fact that he thought the salt and pepper shakers from the night before were replaced with ground sugar and cinnamon sugar! This photo was taken after he took a sip of his salt coffee, to which he said, "not bad," and insisted on drinking [after adding more cream and 2 packs of real sugar]. Macho man.
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Beautiful Mendocino!
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Yes, we're obsessed!

The Famous Drive Through Tree

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    Yes. This actually does exist, we were able to drive [and walk] through it, and it is crazy cool! It's a bit of a tight squeeze, and you have to pay, but it's still cool!
    After driving up the 1 to where it intersects with Highway 101, we got off to go visit this phenomenon before heading to the Avenue of Giants. Although this is pretty giant itself!

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Beautiful, humbling reminder for the journey into the Giants that lie ahead.

Avenue of the Giants

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    The Avenue of Giants is a 30ish mile scenic route next to the 101 that goes through the Humboldt Forest which contains the area's largest group of "Virgin Redwoods." Yeah. I had to look that up. Basically it just means that they've been relatively untouched by humans and uninfluenced by human activity.
    The drive was spectacular, but a minor accident 1/4 of the way through [see below] made the rest of the journey less than exciting for me. Luckily we drove back through the next morning after I'd had rest, ice, Advil, and Starbucks. Much better.

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    So, the accident. I like to call it, "A Fallen Tree and A Fallen Me." Mind you, this was on our first hike. Above you see a fallen redwood, and to the right you see me climbing up it's base. What you can't see, is that Tyler is taking this picture from about 3-4' higher than where I began my climb, so I'm actually 4' off the ground. Initially, I stopped here, but Tyler said he wouldn't take a picture until I got in the hallowed out hole, so I climbed on. The wood was slick, we for some reason weren't wearing our hiking boots despite having them in the car, and I slipped. I slid straight down, somehow managing to only get mud on my palms, and landed on the side/top of my left foot. Within seconds it felt like my shoe was strangling my foot. Tyler told me to "walk it off!" so after hobbling back to the car, I screamed, "get the shoe off!" and saw what I thought was my ankle. Really, it was a swollen golf-ball sized bump about an inch in front of my ankle. Having ruined the trip enough by cancelling out hiking for the rest of the day, I sucked it up and we continued the drive with my foot on the dash and an ice cold water against it. Luckily, I got it x-rayed and made out with just a bad sprain!

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    The morning drive was so serene! We had the entire road to ourselves and the sun coming up over the trees was spectacular!
    We even stopped for a hike to see the Founder's Tree and Dyerville Giant. Yes, I hiked on my foot [sorry moms!]. It was only 0.5mi and Tyler carried me for parts.. and I found I am good at hopping on 1 foot!
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Above: pre-hike photo of road to the trail
Right: Founder's Tree - so tall!
Below: Dyerville Giant
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Absolutely love this photo of the new tree sprouting out of the fallen! For scale, my husband [pictured to the left by the base of the tree] is 6'4" - funny how he looks so tiny next to the roots!
Look forward to sharing more California adventures with you!

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Comments

A blog woth reading for those who love adventures and are planning for the one in their upcoming holidays. It also involves the pictorial presentaion of the beuatiful sites of Northern CA including Mendocino, Highway 1 etc. Very interesting blog indeed.

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