August 21, 2019 – Prospect, Oregon to Crescent City, California

It was all downhill today – Prospect at 2,566 feet to sea level. It was also one of those drives I’ll never forget. We took US62 from Prospect, Oregon (near Crater Lake National Park) the road followed the Rogue River, winding through the mountains. At first, the roadsides were filled with fir, pine, and a few other trees. Sometimes we drove through valleys with farms. I saw some crops I could not identify and, after browsing Google images for a while, I think they are either young grapes vines, hemp, or cannabis. Then we turned north on Interstate 5 to the town of Grants Pass.

The most spectacular part of the trip was US 199 from Grants Pass down to the Pacific Ocean and Crescent City. This road follows the water down to the ocean. There were a number of small resort towns, but the closer we got to the ocean, the narrower the gorge and the larger the trees. Eventually, we were in the redwoods. Sometimes the gorge was so narrow that it was only as wide as the two-lane highway and the creek, between two steep mountainsides. Often, those mountainsides showed signs of previous landslides. That was creepy since it was raining lightly.

Of course, I didn’t take any pictures while driving so I found two with Google images. Here is one demonstrating why it is creepy to drive through those narrow, steep, landslide sections.

The section through the redwoods is magical. Again, from Google Images.

We are staying in an RV park right on the ocean tonight.

The emphasis here is on park, as in parking lot. But, we have a full hookup (water, electric, and sewer) and we can see the ocean waves out the windows.

Scamp in Crescent City, California

It is named Crescent City for the crescent-shaped beach on the south end of town.

It was a bit foggy and misty today. The beach is wide and long. There were dozens of surfers, but the waves did not look too big and exciting to me.

Crescent Beach, California

The city has placed several double-sized picnic tables along the road.

Picnic Table
Crescent Beach

There is a large artificial harbor here, formed by huge rock jetties. These seals were barking (I say singing) loudly for a long time.

This gray one was responding with its own aria. The brown one with the flipper in the air raised up and, apparently, told it to shut up.

These cute Christmas decorations were probably too cute to take down. Those are some sort of fishing (or crabbing?) baskets. We saw a woman using one when we took a walk.

There is a lot of driftwood art in this town. These two pieces are in front of the Chart Room Restaurant where we had excellent seafood dinners.

It was raining in earnest when we finished eating, so we hid out in the RV until it stopped. I thought the town was tired of people running into the light poles in the parking lot. Andy suggested that these large logs are to protect the light poles from Pacific Ocean waves. Yikes.

I spotted more unknown (to me) flowers. These are ankle-high and about the size of violets.

There is a small Coast Guard Station in the harbor.

The gulls here are large and have a bright red spot on their lower beak. The head and chest are exceptionally white. The legs are pink, marking it as a Western Gull.

Western Gull

The gigantic rock at the end of the road had hundreds of these on it. I thought they were large, brilliant white flowers from below. But, after looking at the photo I took with my zoom lens, I see they are some kind of succulent.

While looking them up, I not only learned that they are Dudleya, but are also endangered and protected. People have been poaching them and selling them in Korea, Japan, and China for $40 to $50 per plant.

August 2, 2018 – Crescent City to Eureka, California

We slept late and took our time getting underway.  It was surprisingly cool in Crescent City.  We were parked right next to the City Harbor and decided to take a walk to look around before getting back on the road.  It was dark when we came in so we were seeing our surroundings for the first time  Scamp was parked in front of a large marine building.

The basin just across the street had a number of fishing boats moored in it.

The city harbor has a large, complex breakwater system to protect it from the Pacific Ocean.  We read a signboard about the tsunami of  2011, after the big earthquake in Japan, that destroyed the large marina and most boats in the harbor.

This mermaid is sitting outside the marine supply store.

The sign behind Andy has a wavy blue line to indicate the wave height of the tsunami in 1964.  He is standing high above the normal water level. The water was 20.8 feet high.

Battery Light is on the far side of the harbor and in front of the town.

We walked out on the fishing pier to get a look at the seals we could hear in the distance. Several men were cleaning up after a fishing boat had offloaded its catch. We watched the tractor-trailer drive out as we walked onto the pier.

The seals were a bit too far away to see clearly with the naked eye, so I zoomed with my camera to get a better look. How cute is that?

 

Several old piers were covered with seals.  Several of them were barking regularly.

This fixer-upper was sitting right behind Scamp.

I finally reset my watch to the correct time zone, Pacific in Crescent City. It was only 82 miles to our destination so we to a scenic detour through a state redwood park. There were some extra-large specimens I did not photograph because I passed them by before pulling into a parking spot.  This one behind Scamp is not too small.

I was driving by a spot with several large trees and stopped by a woman walking along the road and leaned out the window.  “Ma’am, can you pause right there so I’ll have a scale model?”  She stopped and gave me a big smile for the picture. Nice tree.

Our next stop was at the Lighthouse Grill in Trinidad, CA.

The interior is artsy and cute.  You place your order at the window and they bring the food to the table.

Here is why I always want to go to the Lighthouse. It’s a nutburger and I am crazy about them. I have been looking forward to this for months! I get at least one every time we visit Christopher.

I pulled over at the Clam Beach overlook between Arcata and Eureka.

There were dozens of seals along the shore of a sand spit.

We got to Eureka at 1403 Pacific time and visited with Son Christopher during his lunch break. Then we drove over the bridge to a Samoa Beach.

I have always been fascinated with the ice plant on California beaches.

It was a short hike over the dune.

We reached the Pacific Ocean and stood on the beach for a while, watching the waves, a surfer, and a few people coming and going.

Then we went back to the RV and took naps.