Whales, seals and a paddle in the surf

Trip Start Jun 30, 2010
Trip End Aug 15, 2010

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Where I stayed

Flag of United States  , California
Saturday, July 31, 2010

Santa Rosa is inland from the beach and we thought we should check out some of the things in the 101 things to do in Somona County booklet available at our hotel. First it was breakfast - I know the hotel is cheap and the breakfast is complimentary but it was the worst I have had so far in the US. All the cereals were of the sugary kind, the peeled hard boiled eggs were rubbery and the mix for the waaffflles (every time I see waffles it reminds me of the bloke in LA!) was not right so when cooked it was rather stodgy. The toast was OK and we actually had a choice of 2% or full cream milk. Usually it is just the 2% stuff which is what I drink anyway. 
Back in our room we put the news on and heard that a camper in Montana had been mauled to death by a grizzly - we were quite close to that area and I am glad we did not camp or come face to face with a bear. Being afraid is not so stupid after all!
So the mighty prius took us off to the overcast and miserable seaside once again. However, we sort of took a wrong turn, saw a bunch of people standing or sitting on low chairs on the headland (Bodega Heads) with binoculars and huge cameras so joined in. We saw some whales which was a nice surprise. When we got back to our car there was another black prius parked next to us but it was much cleaner and newer than ours. We checked it out and I think they have fixed up the issues with the small boot and lights on the dash reflecting on the windscreen which makes night driving a bit of a problem. It is amazing how often we get back to our car and find another prius parked next to it. Must be some sort of secret club that we don't know about. I am trying to do the same just to keep up the standards. 
On parking - I have yet to see any designated motor cycle bays and it is really annoying when car park bays are at a premium and they take up a whole space!!!
We carried on driving and ended up on a beach (Goat Beach) that was supposed to have seals. It didn't and the sea was really rough. We went for a short walk just to be able so say we had been to the beach. Yukari was standing on the water's edge and running away from the surf and the lifeguard said over his megaphone 'stay away from the water'. We are not sure whether it was directed at her or some kids down the beach. The water was very cold and there are big signs warning about the dangers of swimming at this section of the coast as it is very rocky and there are 'sneaker' or 'sleeper' waves that appear from nowhere and can drag you in. Although there were no seals we did see a fluffy white dog with a pink jumper.
As you do we carried on. We did meet this lady from around here while we were at Logan's Pass in Glacier NP (I think I mentioned her before) and she told us to check out the river mouth around Jenner. When we got there we found the seals just flopping around on the beach enjoying the sunshine which was finally beginning to come through the cloud. According to one local I spoke to, the paths down to the beach have been let go for the last 5 years or so because the state of California is bankrupt. They were quite dangerous and she said she often just sits and sort of crawls down. I asked about people possibly suing and she said that stupidity seems to have disappeared recently and it is expected that people do things at their own risk.
Irene asked another local where we could buy good fish and chips - it seemed the right sort of day for it - so we back tracked to Bodega Bay and found a great little place that was really busy. It was run by some Hawaiians and we think it was a surfie hang out as they had a surf movie and Layne Beachley (top Aussie female surfer for those that don't know) doing a voice over. The food was really nice and we were glad we turned back. We then thought we had better check out Bohemian Way which is a 10m road supposed to be great for cyclists. I would not like to cycle on it - it is very narrow and dark through the stands of redwood and people drive quite fast. There are some cute towns with great names like Occidental and Freestone (which has a very nice bakery) and we stopped at Monte Rio which was basically a whole village of shops selling antiques, tea, teapots etc. It was a fun day although we were unable to book all three of us in for a massage and hot volcanic sand soak at a time that suited. It was then back to probably the worst hotel we have stayed in to try and get some sleep for the next day's exertions.





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Lance on

I am pleasantly surprised to know one can F&C in California!

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