Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Current Itinerary And Where We've Been

It's been quite the trek to get to San Francisco and we've stopped at a few very interesting places!

Here is our current itinerary and where we've been since leaving on Sept. 10:

9/15: Neah Bay, WA, out to sea, then to Newport, OR
9/21: Out at sea, then to Shelter Cove, CA 
9/27: Fort Bragg, CA to Bodega Bay, CA
9/28: Bodega Bay, CA
9/29: Drakes Bay, CA
9/30: Sausalito, CA (Yay! finally arrived in San Francisco, CA)
10/6: Sausalito, CA to Half Moon Bay, CA
10/7: Half Moon Bay, CA to Monterey, CA
10/7: Monterey,CA (where we are currently)
10/11: Monterey, CA to Santa Barbara, CA
10/? : Santa Barbara, CA

Where We've Been

While in Newport, OR we visited the small downtown area of Newport, cute shops, lots of sea lions and home to a large bridge and the Rogue Brewery. Did you know that Rogue is in 37 countries? We didn't either.  

Tons of taps at Rogue Brewery
101 Bridge
Lounging sea lions

From Newport, OR, we stayed 1 night anchoring at a small town called Shelter Cove, not much there, but check out this phone booth, and the sign above it! LOL!

I immediately called *12, and then *10 to talk to my former employer - lol!

We left Shelter Cove, the next morning to head to Fort Bragg, CA, where we stayed for a long 5-6 days while we waited for the storm from Alaska to blow over. Fort Bragg / Noyo Basin is a tourist town, very depressed, as the economy has not been kind to it. Georgia-Pacific used to have a plant there, but closed. Our research showed that the town's population is 30% below the poverty line, however the people are very nice and the town itself has spectacular views since it is right on the CA coastline. The downtown area is charming too! We were able to find plenty to do there actually.

We stayed at the marina in Noyo, which was mainly a fishing marina. Thankfully, we were only a few blocks away from a Harvest Market (aka Whole Foods-type market) which was nice.  Our marina was filled with fishing boats that were selling fresh caught albacore tuna for $2.50/lb and a $5 charge to filet it. I couldn't resist and bought and 8lb tuna, only to be eaten by Tim over the next two days, so I went back and bought a 12lb'er, to which we have plenty left over in the freezer. One thing I am loving about getting fresh fish is the sushi! We still haven't caught any fish, but the fishermen in the towns we visit have been doing a great job for us :)

Albacore tuna, sliced by yours truly :)

I was missing land and the woods, so we checked out the Jug Handle State Park, which had a pygmy forest at the top of the hiking trail, very nice hike, awesome weather, I got my land fix. From the website about the hike: Each of the terraces was uplifted from sea level about 100,000 years before the one below it. Plants on each terrace represent a more advanced stage in succession, indicating what the previous, next lower terrace may look like in 100,000 years. The lowest terrace consists of prairie; the second is covered with pines; the third supports a unique pigmy forest with knee-high trees possibly several decades old. 

Fort Bragg also has a few cool sea glass beaches. The site of Glass Beach #1 was a dump from 1906 to 1943, Glass Beach #2 & #3 were landfills from 1943 - 1949. We visited Glass Beach #1 and #2. #1 was picked over but #2 had tons of gems. There were signs of dump-like elements still on the beach protruding out of the sand, like car parts and tires, but what covered it was a beautiful sea glass beach.

From Fort Bragg, we headed south to Bodega Bay, CA, home to the movie 'The Birds'. The movie was filmed partly in Bodega Bay and the town of Bodega. A good portion of places where the film was shot is still there, in the town of Bodega, but we couldn't find the phonebooth! In lieu of hunting down places where the movie was filmed, we opted for a tour at the UC Davis Marine Lab at Bodega Bay. Cool stuff there and we learned a lot, did you know:
  1. We've been seeing tons of gray whales on the way down to SF and beyond. We learned that they migrate to feed and breed in Alaska for the summer, and migrate down to Baja to birth in September/October timeframe, thus why we've been seeing them! Baby calves drink up to 50 gallons of milk per day and put on 60 lbs per day, wow! 
  2. A gray whale's tongue is 15 ft long and weighs as much as an elephant.
  3. Orcas live with their moms their whole lives.
  4. Lobsters are blue in the Pacific because of the lack of pigment in their shell due to diet.
  5. Sperm whales have teeth and can dive down 3k feet, but are believed to go as far down at 10k feet. They can hold their breath fro 2 hours and are known as 'champion divers'.
  6. Rockfish live 100-200 years and there are 60-70 different types.
  7. The barnacle has the largest penis for its size. Who knew?
UC Davis - Bodega Marine Lab
Live Blue Lobster
Gray whale flipper, they used to have more fingers years ago!

From Bodega, we anchored for one night in Drakes Bay (foggy and cold) before heading into San Francisco! More about SF in the next blog, as you can see I'm behind :)  What a journey it's been thus far!  

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