Tuesday, May 22, 2012


Sunday, May 20 – We drove to the California Coast today. It certainly wasn't an easy drive! It was only about 23 miles away, but due to steep grades, tight turns. switch backs, and sheer drop-offs with some parts of the road marked with 10 MPH speed limits and others requiring ALL vehicles to use low gear. It took over an hour to reach Shelter Cove, CA.

Road to Shelter Cove

This area is referred to the Lost Coast of California. It is California's only coastal wilderness, where no development or major roads come near the ocean.

Rugged coast line

At the end of this challenging road from Garberville, the town of Shelter Cove rewards you with truly magnificent views of the Coast. Black sand beaches, outstanding fishing and all the solitude, peace and relaxation you could need are found here.

Black Sand Beach

Shelter Cove is know for its black sands but also for Cape Mendocino Lighthouse. This structure presented huge challenges to the designers. They had to take into account 400' cliffs prone to frequent earthquakes, landslides and storms.

Us at lighthouse

The rocky cliffs are home to a noisy group of sea lions and some magnificent views of waves breaking along the shore. There are numerous warnings to stay alert of rogue waves and strong under currents.

Sea lions

Danger sign


We were told not to miss the Clam Chowder available at the small eatery in town. So we stopped and shared a bowl of this delicious treat. It was great and makes us anxious to compare it, numerous times, while driving up the Oregon and Washington coasts.

Paul eating chowder

We saw this on the back of one of the RVs parked in front of us. We think it says it all.


We see these birds by our motor home each day. Masha would like to know if anyone knows what they are called?

known bird

She also needs help identifying this flower. They were all over in Shelter Cove.

known flower


We are camped at Richardson Grove Campground just outside of Garberville, CA, on highway 101. What a surprise we had when visiting this quaint little town. The 60's are alive and well. This is a Hippie community! And may we say, the use of “wacky tobbacy” is openly obvious. I talked to the owner of the campground and she confirmed this by calling Garberville the Marijuana Capital of Northern California. I understand you can obtain an once of the stuff for “medicinal purposes” without the local law coming after you. The Federal Drug Enforcement people don't agree with this “looking-the-other-way” approach, it should be noted.

This is the local dress.

They even have their own flag.DSC04487

What is that flower on the top of the building?DSC04489

We fit right in.

Thanks for stopping by. Hope to see y'all back real soon. Have a great day!


  1. Maybe we need to head that way, sounds like a fun place. Can you send me some....lol I see you didn't drive the coach over there.

  2. Looks like that couple, no make that the whole town, is lost in the 60's.

  3. A couple years ago we stayed somewhere around the area you are. We made a trip to the coast through the mountains and then took a side road. There were several 16% grades!! I had never seen a sign posted at 16% and then we saw two.

  4. Good to see you fitting in with all the hippy-dippy folks there.

    Can't help you with the birds or the flowers I'm afraid.

    Sure looks like a fun place to spend a few days and those coast beaches look pretty nice.

  5. Far out, man, I really dig it. I mean, like, those outfits are just gnarly dude. Groovy!

  6. I believe those are Mountain bluebirds...but bluebirds of some sort for sure.

    What a beautiful place. Those roads would have freaked me out!

  7. The photo of you two standing by the Cape Mendocino Lighthouse is your best one yet. You both look so happy. Thanks for sharing your blog. I enjoy reading and learning from it.

  8. What a lovely place for a day trip; a wide strip of sand for quiet walks and a lighthouse to boot. My kind of place.

  9. Sure do love the west coast! Looks like you two fit right in there...

  10. I picture you guys rolling down the 101 looking like the Cheech & Chong movie with pot smoke coming out the windows..lol Have fun and watch out for the MUNCHIES..

  11. The black sand beaches really intrigue me. I'd love to see them in person some day.

  12. I hate to disagree with Karen, but I will anyway. While the birds are certainly blue, they are not bluebirds. They are Western scrub jays. :)

  13. Gosh, we lived in California many years, visited that northern coast many times, but never got to Shelter Cove. Now I guess we have to return to California just to take that wonderful road you described! Our kinda road -- by car, not by motorhome!

  14. Scrub Jays are my best guess as well... now as for the flowers I have never seen them before, but will soon I guess!

  15. Yep, I would say that they are scrub jays. Looks like a beautiful area there. Love the idea of it being away from everything. Sounds like a pretty laid back kind of place.

    Kevin and Ruth

  16. quite the drive but well worth the view upon arrival I think...sure looks like you fit in with the era there lol

  17. The flowers look like poker plants or torch lilies but this variety is a lot taller. Somebody will get you an answer!


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