You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘California’ category.

Golden Gate Bridge from Marin Headlands, Marin County

Golden Gate Bridge from Marin Headlands, Marin County

This video was taken on Sunday, March 8, 2009.

It shows the trip from Marin County in the North, into San Francisco. The San Francisco skyline is visible for a few moments just above the railings on the left hand side of this Art Deco style bridge completed in 1937. The color is not really gold but a paint color called International Orange.

Advertisements

The spring rains stopped few days ago to let sunshine warm up San Francisco to 60°F (16°C) this Sunday. Cyclists, hikers, and motorists were out to enjoy the fine weather and scenery north of the Golden Gate Bridge. Wildflowers, especially California poppies, are starting to bloom on the hillsides.

The steep winding road along the Marin Headlands with view of Pacific Ocean

The steep winding road along the Marin Headlands with view of Pacific Ocean

Steinbeck country is at its finest in springtime. The oak trees on the rolling hills around Salinas are surrounded by a haze of purplish blue lupin. March is probably the best time to see the wildflowers bloom. Take the Monterey-Salinas Highway, Route 68, which exits Route 1 and continues for 17 miles (27 km) to Salinas.  Get off the main road at Corral De Tierra or San Benancio, to get into the hills for sublime views. New golf courses and macmansions are invading the territory so enjoy while it lasts.

Fields of lupin near Salinas

Fields of lupin near Salinas

For local dining, several places come to mind. Contemporary American cuisine finds its home at Hullaballoo, on Main Street in Oldtown Salinas. A few doors away is Shogun Japanese Cuisine, always reliable for sushi. In hot, dry Salinas, it is easy to forget that fish is hauled in at Monterey Bay less than an hour away. For authentic Mexican, my favorite is Mi Tierra on E. Gabilan St. This family run restaurant serves a spicy, tender birria on Saturdays and Sundays. This traditional goat stew is made with dried chiles, tomatoes and oregano, ingredients that perfectly capture the essence of the local Mediterranean climate. Chips arrive at the table with 3 salsas. The horchata, a sweet and cold rice drink, is the perfect beverage for such a meal.

Yosemite is only about 4 hours from San Francisco or 6 hours from Los Angeles. The towering peaks and redwood trees are magnificent. Well-maintained hiking and camping facilities are available.

Yosemite vista

Yosemite vista

Food should always be kept in a secure metal locker to prevent theft by marauding bears!

The rugged coastline of California’s Mendocino County has spectacular cliffs pounded by mighty Pacific storms. Some tough species of plants have evolved to thrive in this harsh environment. Further inland, ancient geological uplifting of marine terraces created areas of nutrient poor and very acidic soil where only dwarf trees grow. Dwarf Mendocino cypress can be seen in the unusual pygmy forest protected within the Van Damme State Park. A hundred year old tree here may only be less than 8 feet high.

Succulent plants cling to Pacific Coast cliff

Succulent plants cling to Pacific Coast cliff

Pygmy trees in Van Damme State Park

Pygmy trees in Van Damme State Park

July 2019
M T W T F S S
« Dec    
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031  
Advertisements