Monday, May 03, 2021

The Lost Coast: Day One

After years of reading about the Lost Coast of Northern California, I finally went!

The Lost Coast is a stretch of the coastline that is desolate and rugged. Because of heavy rain and frequent seismic activity, the Pacific Coast Highway never made it there. I first learned about it in college. There was wilderness that was once the home of the Sinkyone native people. A paper company wanted to chop down the trees, and I joined a protest group on campus to stop the destruction. We succeeded!

In order to get there, I first took Highway 101. I had driven through the Chandelier Tree once, in my first generation TSX sedan. But I had to take a picture of my wagon and the tree for my son at home. So I paid the $10.

Next up was lunch at The Peg House. It was supposed to have one of the best burgers in the West. It was above average. I was also looking forward to their BBQ oysters, but their oysterman wouldn't deliver fresh ones until the next day. Coupled with a lack of internet, I was getting a taste of the Lost Coast.

Once I got to Fortuna, I filled the wagon up with gas and turned off 101. Ferndale was the last real town in civilization.

The road to Cape Mendocino (the westernmost point of California) was windy, narrow, steep, and full of cows. The photo below was taken during the descent to the coast. It reminded me of Switzerland.

There's the wagon in front of the cape.

The next stretch was along the coast. It was pretty spectacular.

Once the road turned inland to Petrolia and Honeydew and beyond, it was a nightmare of a drive. I didn't dare take any pictures. The two hour drive was exhausting. I was going to stay at an inn at Shelter Cove. I first stopped at the general store for some provisions for the next day's hike. I spotted this Ford Ranger pickup truck that was getting some use.

I got the best room in the house, a corner unit on the top floor. I had fish and chips at the only restaurant that was open and got back to the room just in time to catch the sunset.

Tomorrow, the hike!

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