West Coast Trip Part 1

I have so many pictures to edit from last summer and get posted. My oldest daughter and I took a West coast trip for about 3 weeks, and traveled more than 5000 miles in a convertible! We stayed at a different place every night.

We flew into Las Vegas, and began our self-guided tour from there. We left Vegas and headed for LA, and stayed in a Historic Hotel in Hollywood. Went to Beverly Hills, Hollywood Hills, Rodeo Drive, Runyon Canyon, Hollywood Blvd, Santa Monica Pier, just to name a few. We got pictures of movie stars' homes and even had Jay Leno wave at us in his steam engine car! Eucalyptus trees everywhere! The smell....oh the smell! We drove through Burbank and Topanga Canyon. From there we went across California to the Sequoia and Kings Canyon. The vineyards and orchards were something to see on the way there! Stopped at a fruit stand on the side of the road and got some delicious dried fruit! We stayed in a quaint little motel in Three Rivers. They even had farm animals!

The Sequoias - no words can describe the feeling of standing at the base of a Sequoia tree. The pictures I took can't capture the feeling I got of being as small as an ant when standing under one of these trees. The textures of the trunk of these massive trees are so different. They are soft like a sponge, but have the texture of a coconut shell. Words can't explain.

After hiking and driving through the unbelievable Sequoias, and taking hundreds of pictures, we drove through the Napa Valley to Monterey. Oh the beauty of Monterey! Sea Lions, Pebble Beach & 17 mile drive! They have the most unique trees I've ever seen. Cannery Row and the Aquarium were very interesting.

From there we took the famous Highway 1 up the coast to Pigeon Point Lighthouse (where a scene in the last Fast & Furious was filmed) and stayed the night in San Francisco. San Francisco - the architecture was amazing. Everything was square and had flat roofs. We had a view of the Golden Gate Bridge from our hotel room. Amazing. We went on foot to explore the city and after walking up (& down) the famous Lombard Street, we went to the famous Fisherman's Wharf at Pier 39. We saw San Francisco Bay, Alcatraz, the bridge, the Trolley turnaround, Hyde Park and much more.

We got an early start the next day and headed to the Redwoods. We stopped at Point Reyes National Seashore, Chandelier Tree (a Redwood you can drive through) and had lunch at the Chimney Tree Grill. There, they have a Redwood Tree that is completely hollowed out due to a fire, but it's still living. You can go in it! This was the beginning tof our Redwood experience. Avenue of the Giants was next. We stopped after that at Fern Canyon in Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park. This area is where they filmed Jurassic Park! We settled in for the night in Eureka to begin our early morning tour of the Redwood National Forest.

Walking early in the morning with fog drifting through the tops of Redwood trees is something everyone needs to experience. Pictures do not do it justice. Just standing in the awe of God's awesome creation gave us a glimpse of what Heaven must be like.

On to Oregon - which I think is the most beautiful coast I've ever seen. We froze to death with the top down on the convertible, but I wasn't going to miss an opportunity to take pictures! We went up Hwy. 101 and stayed in Eugene. My parents once lived there and so I thought we would check it out! The next morning we headed to Portland and got pictures of the Colombia River and on to Astoria for the night. One place I regret not seeing in Portland was the Japanese Gardens. Guess I’ll just have to go back!

Astoria is where they filmed the Goonies. It's a little quaint town. We stayed right on the river and drove down to Seaside. I wish we had a little more time before dark; we would've gone further to Cannon Beach. But, the sun was setting fast and we had to capture it, so Seaside it was!

The next morning we went across the Astoria - Megler Bridge and along the coast.

To be continued………

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