Road trip North - California Coast

Trip Start Nov 04, 2012
Trip End Jan 02, 2013

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Flag of United States  , California
Friday, November 9, 2012

After 5 great days in SF it was time to bite the bullet and start the drive north to explore the west coast between here and Portland Oregon. I thought driving on the right with the steering wheel on the left and driving the windiest road in the US would be the hard part, however dealing with Avis was the biggest hurdle. A long story, but the short version is about the pre-paid car they couldn't supply, the expensive upgrade they tried to sell us for 2 hours, (these are always free anywhere else), the one way fee that tripled from $100 to $300, the first car that wouldn't move because of a stuck handbrake and finally the replacement car with nearly bald tyres. Oh yes, and they have billed our credit card twice! Maybe we need to sell the car on the black market to recoup costs.

Anyway, on the road, over the Golden Gate Bridge and on to Coastal Highway 1. It's really slow going, plenty of bends, scenic lookouts, photo opportunities, dead raccoons and a skunk. The drive so far has been a mix of rugged pacific coastline and today we drove through towering redwood forests. We stayed at Bodega Bay, famous for the filming of Alfred Hitchcocks - The Birds, then last night we stayed in a beautiful old hotel at Mendocino (can't get that 1969 tune out of our heads!) It's a great seaside village perched on the cliff's edge. People kept saying Kris Kristoffersen frequents same pub!
Point Arena Lighthouse was a bit of a walk but worth the visuals.

Today we walked half a mile out to Point Cabrillo Light Station, drove the Hwy 1 torture track to Leggett where we drove through the giant redwood tree and "Avenue of Giants" and joined the Redwood Hwy 101 to Eureka.

Things we've noticed - Americans are really friendly and helpful, considerate and careful on the roads, they stop for pedestrians wherever they are, very little litter ($1000 fine if you do), the meals, coffee etc are all mega size, (haven't finished a meal yet). Note from Brenda - haven't had room to fit in dessert yet!! Traumatized!
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Jess on

where's the accompanying pics!! i'm a visual learner!!!

coolyback on

Having trouble with pics - coming soon! on

Brenda - tip from the expert desert eater - skip the main & have only desert at least 4 times per week!

ando52 on

Love the drive through tree. Are you going to Yosemite and Sequoia national parks- fantastic scenery and hiking trails

Laura Connelly on

Love the photos! Especially the drive-through tree!!

Ando on

Found any local beers to enjoy Mick or have you turned queer and are into the pineapple dacquiris

Sue n Paul on

Great photos as always!

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