BRookings to Los Angles

Trip Start Oct 31, 2007
Trip End Dec 17, 2007

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Flag of United States  , California
Thursday, November 8, 2007

Spent an amazing day driving through the Redwood forests of Northern California.  The Redwood forest extends from the California state border all the way south of San Francisco.  These trees are said to be the tallest in the world and a living link to the age of the dinosaurs.  They grow from a seed the size of a tomato seed, yet they may weigh 500 tons and stand taller than the Statue of Liberty.  With its foot-thick armour as bark, these trees seem nearly impervious to the effects of fire and insects.  We drove the old scenic highway 101 and the Avenue of the Giants for most of the day to enjoy the sights.  These road was very quite, letting us drive slowly and take it all in. Stopped and took a hike through the Rockerfeler Forest where we saw indescribable beauty including some of the largest of the trees in the Redwoods.  The Redwood Park just outside of Vancouver is nothing compared to what we saw here.  Stopped at Richardson Grove State Park for the night to camp in the midst of these giants
On the way to San Francisco we saw many hillsides that were being clear-cut and the only big truck that accompanied us on the interstate were that of lumber.  North of San Francisco the sky got smokey and one couldn't see much of the countryside any longer.  At least we are assuming the fog to be smoke even though it was no smell.  We weren't even able to see across the Golden Gate Bridge as we drove through San Francisco due to this.   No time to stop since we just started driving for the day but we did admire the architecture of the buildings in this city as we drove through.  Just south is were we veered of course and heading towards Monterey on the coast.  So many people told us to do the coastal drive and if we didn't have time for it all at least the 17-mile drive just south of Monterey.  Well it turns out the 17-mile drive is over rated.  After paying the $9 toll to get onto this driving tour we discovered its not much more then driving though some ritzy neighbourhood located on the coast.  Personally I enjoyed looking at the million dollar homes much more then the coastal views.  The coast and sea were hard to see due to the fog/smoke and what we could see of the water there was nothing but seaweed afloat.  After checking our map we discovered it would be backtracking to get back to the interstate so we decided to head for Big Sur for the night and continue the coast drive in the morning.  If one is to do any of the coastal drive we recommend from Carmel By the Sea to Big Sur, breath taking.
Spent most of the day driving the coastal highway.  Still the views were hampered by fog/smoke.  Met back up with the interstate north of Santa Barbra.  Now we have no choice but to head for LA and fight the traffic.  Camped south of Oxnard at Point Mugu Park for the night. 
Well we are down as far as LA now and Dan feels since all the hockey stores are in this area we should so in search of some equipment for him.  Spent most of the day fighting traffic on the freeways form one store to the next.  By the end Dan had bought skates and some hockey pants.  Lucky we have room in the van to store this stuff because I don't think he will need it in Mexico.  Found a state park east of LA for the night.  Dan is off to make his offering to the racoons in the garage bin and I should call it a night.  Tomorrow we will be into Arizona.
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