July 18, 2013 – Guerneville to Ft. Bragg, CA

We have planned a week’s trip for our anniversary. We started from home yesterday and drove up to Guerneville. Today we make the trip from Guerneville to Ft. Bragg and then we will continue up the coast to Ferndale and Eureka before heading back with a stop in Glen Ellen before we get home.

After a very nice breakfast (included) at the Applewood Inn and stopping for picnic supplies at Safeway, we are off on the next leg of our adventure. Our GPS, Jack, keeps telling us to turn back and take the highway. We ignore him and take the twisty road into the fog and redwoods that heads to California 1, the coast highway. Our first stop is an overlook just north of Jenner. Since the marine layer has not yet burnt off, the coast is gray and menacing. The Pacific Ocean is just not a friendly body of a water. It is cold and pierced with rocks. The tides can bring in a tsunami or a freak wave that can overwhelm and drown the unwary. There are few beaches mostly just cliffs, definitely not family friendly. But it is gorgeous.

Rocks in the foggy Pacific north of Jenner
Rocks in the foggy Pacific north of Jenner

John looking hot in the cold
John looking hot in the cold

Finally the sun breaks through and the temperature rises to about 60, a heat wave. We stop to take a few pictures while the sun lasts.

Blue skies!
Blue skies!

Blue skies for now but the marine layer lurks at the horizon
Blue skies for now but the marine layer lurks at the horizon

Further up the coast we turn down a street and find a little fishing port. Ports are few and far between on the Pacific. We read a monument honoring 15 Japanese men who sailed 11,000 kilometers from Japan to this little port in a 15 meter wooden boat in 1913! It was their dream to come to the United States. We walk out on the pier where fishermen have just brought in their catch of salmon. They are dickering about weight and price. There is much salty language.

The entirety of Port Arena.
The entirety of Port Arena.

The losers in a game of Go Fish
The losers in a game of Go Fish

My eye is caught by a sign on the pier. It could be a metaphor for marriage.
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Our next stop is at the Arena Point lighthouse. In order to get close to it we would have to pay $7.50 each. We decide to admire it from a distance and also take a look at the ocean and the wildlife.

Point Arena Lighthouse
Point Arena Lighthouse
Cold man and the sea (2)
Cold man and the sea (2)

Sea lions
Sea lions

Blue heron
Blue heron

Water rushing through a hole in the rock
Water rushing through a hole in the rock

After a while we stop for a picnic lunch at some tables near the ocean. It is so cold and windy that we finish our lunch in the car and take no pictures.

It is slow-going traveling on California 1 and our trip of less than 120 miles to Ft. Bragg takes most of the day. We check into our motel in Ft. Bragg. Our room is most unusual. The bathtub/shower divides the bedroom from the bathroom. Whose good idea was this!

Bed, bathtub, bathroom. Weird.
Bed, bathtub, bathroom. Weird.

The best feature of the room is the view. With the door open for natural air conditioning we will be able to listen to the ocean all night.

The view from our room
The view from our room

Tonight’s dinner is sort of a pilgrimage. Maybe seventeen years ago we took a trip with Jonathan up the north coast. Sarah was away doing a band thing or maybe at camp. I am not really sure of the timing of this adventure. Anyway, one of the places we had dinner was called The Restaurant in Ft. Bragg. As a complement to “The Restaurant” sign outside, on the door leading out on to the street is a sign saying “The Rest of the World.” Jon asked us to take a picture of it. Our dinner there tonight is an homage to the fish we saw on the dock today, grilled king salmon.

Dinner at The Restaurant started with bagna cauda
Dinner at The Restaurant started with bagna cauda

The salmon was very fresh and good.  The rest, meh.
The salmon was very fresh and good. The rest, meh.

The Restaurant, Ft. Bragg, CA
The Restaurant, Ft. Bragg, CA
From the interior, "the rest of the world"
From the interior, “the rest of the world”

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