Monday, July 11, 2016

Into Oregon

Waking up beneath giant Redwood trees was the perfect way to start the day. We didn’t have the rainfly on the tent last night so we could see straight up through the top and into the towering trees that surrounded us. It was the first thing I saw this morning and the vivid image is still in my mind. With the benefit of daylight, we walked around the area near our campsite and quickly discovered that it was even more beautiful than we had realized last night. We were slow to pack up, but the promise of a day full of adventures got us going.

About an hour and a half north of us we pulled off the 101 to hike a trail called Trillium Falls, named after the small white flowers that covered the ground. It was a 2.1 mile loop, with the falls only ¼ mile in. It’s hard to describe hiking through an old growth Redwood forest. I felt like I was on a different planet, or that I was on ‘Honey I Shrunk the Kids.’ Everywhere we looked there was something beautiful and surreal commanding our attention. We hiked slowly, partly because we were staring in awe at our surroundings and partly because Clara had biffed it at the beginning of the trailhead. Her knee was hurt badly enough that Brian had to carry her for a while. She’s been hopping or hobbling all day long. It’s pretty swollen but not discolored… hopefully she’ll recover quickly. At the end of the hike we ate lunch and then hit the road again.

We finally made it out of California and are spending our first night in Oregon. Sunset Bay is where we’re camping tonight. It’s very different from the Redwoods from last night but equally beautiful. The bay has a sandy beach, there are tide pools close by, and places to watch the seals and sea lions (yes I learned the difference again yesterday; one has earflaps and the other has ear holes, but I can’t remember which is which). We watched a stunning sunset over sunset bay and then came back to camp for a fire and s’mores. I love that both campgrounds we’ve been to have flush toilets and showers. But there’s absolutely no Wi-Fi to be found, and cell coverage is spotty at best. I’m journaling every day, but don’t know when I’ll actually have a chance to upload to the blog.

One reason we need Internet access is to figure out where we’re going and staying tomorrow. Our itinerary is so loose that we don’t have many details figured out yet. We also need Internet so we can find a flight home for Brian. His grandma is likely going to pass away tonight (we probably won’t hear about it until we’re back in cell range tomorrow), and her funeral is scheduled for next Monday. We’ll probably be biking the Hiawatha trail or making our way across Montana that day… But making sure Brian can be home for grandma Betty’s funeral is the first priority. I wish we could all be there, but the logistics aren’t in our favor.

So far Chase and Clara have been great travel companions. They get in the occasional squabble but all things considered they’re road trip rock stars. We gave them each a set amount of souvenir money for when we get to Seattle, but the deal is each time they fight we take away a dollar. Who says you can’t bribe good behavior?