Thursday, May 5, 2011

The Beautiful Mendocino Coast

Mendocino - The cutest little village on the ocean! Originally established as a logging port in the 1850s, Mendocino has successfully preserved its New England-style clapboard houses. Of course, all the wonderful shops were housed in these historical buildings with a view of the coast that is to die for. If you are looking for beautiful, very expensive, one of a kind hand made wood pieces - they have just the shop for you! There are also hand painted silk scarves for $350, estate jewelry, and endless art pieces depicting the coast at various times of the day. But, each time you step out of the shop - there is that million $$$ view that you don’t have to pay for. So - who can complain?!?!?

Two of the best finds in the town - and maybe the trip:

For Gary there was the photo/toy store - “Out of This World”. A great combination don’t you think?? Toys for no matter what age! Needless to say this is where Gary spent most of his time while in Mendocino - checking out yet another camera. Pleased to say he saved his wallet and emerged without any packages - whew;-)

For Elizabeth there was the “Gallery Bookshop”. Oh my goodness! Many hours could have been spent here but, I escaped with only three books. Our book club’s next read is “The Legend of Colton H. Bryant” by Alexandra Fuller. In the past two weeks two Barnes & Noble stores had to look it up only to tell me they could order it and have it shipped! First they had to look it up - then they had to order! (Like Magic has an address!!) The title was barely out of my mouth at the “Gallery Bookshop” when they said “Oh what a great book - I love Alexandra Fuller!” Then proceeded to take me directly to it. All the way back she raved about Fuller’s first book, “Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight”, an autobiography of Fuller growing up in Africa. So, of course, I bought them both. In the conversation it came up that this was a ‘book club‘ read - so, then I asked if they had our next selection - “Just Kids” by Patti Smith. She looked at me and said “Who makes your selections? These are incredible books you are reading and very unlike book clubs! Do you always read non-fiction?” At that moment I was VERY proud of our Book Club and VERY happy to be a member - and still felt like a Goddess!! Also, very happy to support the ‘local’ bookstore - this wonderful little gem almost in the middle of no where! Take a look at!

Well - stomachs were growling by now so the Historic Mendocino Hotel called for lunch. Food was nothing special but the historic hotel had its charm and that wonderful view again.

Fort Bragg was our afternoon destination. The surrounding area was designated the Mendocino Indian Reservation back in the late 1800’s and housed the Pomo Indians. Fort Bragg was established to watch over the reservation and maintain peace among the Indians - really! The Fort was not in existence long, but is now the main town around - the Safeway, Starbucks, Radio Shack, a manicure - all the things we needed for today.

A move 20 miles up the coast was in order for the next couple of days - hoping for a better view! Magic did really well up this stretch of Highway 1 - considering the narrow, winding nature of the road - SO, it only took us 2 hours to go the 20 miles! And, at the end of the drive - THIS is what we were looking for as a camping spot on this beautiful California coast!

Soooo, what do ya think... a Corona or a Cialis commercial?

Great views from our camp spot.

We did manage to pull ourselves away from this view for a morning hike on the Grove Trail in Leggett - which had its own sites of the majestic redwoods.

Taking a walk through the Redwood Grove at Standish-Hickey State Park.

The Redwoods' version of the twin towers.

AND - to drive thru the “Chandelier Drive-Thru Tree” -

Last time Gary did this was in a 1955 Chevy station wagon.

No problem, you have and inch on each side.

While on the coast, the weather has cooperated wonderfully and given us the most beautiful days! It has been sunny first thing in the morning - no fog to burn off. And, the fog has NOT rolled in at night - so the stunning sunsets have been visible in all their glory!

A beautiful end to the day.

But, today we say good bye to the coast for a few days and head inland a bit into the Redwoods - which will provide another kind of beauty and interest.

More in a few days - From Magic, this is Elizabeth and Gary reporting;-)

No comments:

Post a Comment