Saturday, May 19, 2012
We started the day with a breakfast of leftover Mexican food,
packed our rental car for the last time we're leaving on a
red-eye flight tonight and checked out of our '70s-decor Motel 6
paradise. We're in California. Let's go to the beach!
Point Reyes National Seashore to Knoxville
A scenic drive through the redwoods up Sir Francis Drake Boulevard
brought us to Point Reyes National Seashore, a 71,000-acre wilderness
area located in Marin County on a peninsula jutting into the
After stopping at the Bear Valley Visitor Center to get a map, we
headed to McClures Beach, where we took a short, steep hike through
beautiful wildflowers to a scenic cove surrounded by steep bluffs.
We didn't actually venture into the 50-degree pounding surf,
though. Get real! So this is what coast would look like if it
wasn't overrun with hotels and condos. Nice!
Point Reyes National
Tom at the
Did Jana forget to claim
the Pacific Ocean?
Leaving McClures Beach, we came across some tule elk, reintroduced
to the park in 1999. Before 1860, thousands of elk roamed the
We explored a number of side roads, vistas, and beaches before
arriving at the Point Reyes Lighthouse, the windiest place on the
Pacific Coast, according to the National Park Service, and I'm a
believer! Very scenic.
View from Mount Vision
Point Reyes Beach
From the lighthouse
The windy lighthouse
Chimney Rock was our last stop at Point Reyes Seashore. It was
windy here too. We ate the last of our sandwich stuff and organized
our gear one last time, as we drop off our car in three hours.
While eating, we were lucky enough to spot a whale! It was a brief
glimpse, but this late in the whale-watching season, it's a wonder
we saw one at all.
View from Chimney
We took the 1 south down the coast, a winding drive with dramatic
scenery, like a little Big Sur. Then we crossed the Golden Gate
Bridge, drove through San Francisco, and soon arrived at the
airport. I left the $1.00 pocketknife I'd purchased at the
beginning of our trip with the girl where we turned in the rental
car. Tom left his hiking poles at Chimney Rock. We had to give
these things up to avoid checking a bag.
Pacific Coast along
After boarding our plane, a long delay, and ultimately a
replacement plane, our four-hour layover in Detroit turned into
just enough time to board our flight to Knoxville. Good enough. We
arrived home at 1:00 p.m. on Sunday to a somewhat indifferent
Carlos and then picked up a thrilled Spike at the kennel at 4:00.
It was a great trip!
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