Monday, November 30, 2009


I refuse to be vilified in such a manner!

1. Brushing teeth is not as important as your dentist would recommend. Apples are nature's toothbrush. I'm not saying I ate an apple, just stating a fun fact. Besides, I got around to it eventually...or rather will get around to it.
2. The underwear incident is still under review. I maintain my position of innocent-until-proven-guilty. Right now the only witness (Emma) is refusing to cooperate.
3. Just like the burnt cheese crisps on Thanksgiving, there is more than enough responsibility to go around. I am not my ice chests keeper.
4. Taxidermied animals? Really. I think this should be moved into the column of "reasons I do appreciate Zach today." If the FBI had any idea that Paige was as obsessed with taxidermied animals to the degree in which she is, she'd be tops on their watch list. I'm doing her a favor by keeping her sicko fascinations under the radar.

Alright, but seriously folks, you're probably not here to watch me score points on Paige. You're here to find out what we've been up to lately. Either that or because its commercial time on the TV and you haven't ponied up for a TiVO yet.

Here's the play-by-play since you last joined us:

After leaving the coffee shop in Arcata (where the open mic night made our ears a bad way) we went on the never-ending hunt for a camp site. For those of you traveling through northern California hoping to camp most of the way, you should note that there is a scarcity of non-RV-infested campsites from the southern edge of Redwoods National and State Parks to about two or three hours south of there. We had decided to forgo camping in the national park because they ask that you keep your pets leashed while you are there. Dogs are predators, lots of wildlife, we understand. We also didn't want to stay in a huge RV park where Emma could get hit by an ATV, four wheeler, Humvee, or anything else you can drag behind a bus, so after a back and forth search for an amenable site in Trinidad, Arcata and Eureka, we opted to push on to the next state park with camping, Richardson Grove State Park (for those of you following us on your state parks maps). There, we bunked down just after midnight in a very nice, isolated campsite.

In the morning we discovered we had chosen a wonderful campsite. We lounged around and read near camp all morning while Emma chased that wildlife she's not supposed to chase [On the way out of the campsite we noticed the posted sign that said that we should keep our dogs leashed at all times in all state parks also. I guess the national parks aren't that crazy. Maybe it would make sense to keep Emma on her leash while camping in a state who has bears emblazoned across everything from its flags to its coins. We're going to set up a dog run with some rope and test her out tonight. Hopefully she won't scream bloody murder while we're setting up camp]. Around noon we packed up and headed south towards the famously rugged highway 1.

With regards to highway 1: lets just say that if you ever get the chance to drive this highway, jump on it like Emma on a cat. It has arguably more turns in the first twenty miles than Hawaii's famed road to Hana. And if you are able to resist the urge to pull of the highway at the end of the twenty miles when you hit the ocean and marvel at the vista you're faced with, you must be inhuman or in desperate need of a bathroom (which is another 10 miles down the road). We stopped and took many a picture which someday you might be able to see if we can ever find somewhere that will let me upload my pictures or download an image resizer. Imagine a rocky cliff of a coast that meanders in and out of an angry, pounding ocean, lit by sun and shaded by layers of mist. Now take what you are imagining and make it 10 times as nice. I just looked back at the pictures I took. This description and the pictures are grossly inadequate to the actual scenery and experience.

From the lookout point we cruised down the coast, stopping at a lowpoint to wander around the beach and throw the ball with Emma. From there we stopped and tasted some delicious wine, hit the North Coast Brewery for a pitcher of beer and checked out the Triangle Tattoo parlor in Fort Bragg. We'll be setting up camp tonight at Van Damme State Park just south of Mendocino.

Tomorrow we are going to have a lazy morning on the beach and explore Mendocino. From there we're going to book it down to San Francisco and stay with Ashley, a friend of JJ's. *Note: we have never met Ashley before and are incredibly grateful she is opening her house up to two strangers and a dog. **Second note: if you know of anyone willing to be as friendly/crazy as Ashley that lives in pretty much any other city across the country, please give them our phone number.

And here we are, back up to speed, sitting in a coffee shop with another open mic; life has a way of repeating itself.

Paige posted our projected itinerary for the next few weeks. Note the weekend in Vegas. Contact your travel agent, internet site of choice, or the host at your favorite casino and book your travel now. For all you climbing bums out there, note the time in Bishop, Vegas (red rocks) and possibly Hueco Tanks. We would love to see some familiar faces.



  1. Another amazing post Zach. Your description of the pictureque view brought a small tear to my eye...or it might be my allergies acting up. Two questions:
    1.)You referenced a bad ear bleed in Arcata. Is there such thing as ears bleeding in a good way?
    2.)Did Emma go in the brewery with you? That seems like it might be violating some kind of health code.
    Sounds like you guys are having a blast. Keep the blogs coming. We are keeping score! :)
    Love ya!,

  2. You two need a show on either the Travel Channel or PBS. Your travel log is soooooo much better. Love reading about your adventures. As for a place to stay along the way of your travels, please remember that Uncle Ickabod, Aunt Ellen, and Grandpa Derf live in El Paso. Can send you their number via email. Love you both! Mom

  3. I am not allowed to go to Vegas again this year. Sorry. Though I do happen to know a "local" you might be able to stay with. Ha ha sorry couldn't resist.

    I also have a question about the "good" ear bleeds, but it was asked above. Instead, I will ask: How did Ems fare with the dog run? Smart plan, considering all those emblazoned bears, etc.

    This all sounds exciting and stuff but ... well ... maybe come home.