Day 76 – 11/14 Avenue of the Giants, and Ferndale

We had a nice day driving through the Avenue of the Giants, then driving through back roads towards the ocean and then Ferndale, which is a nice small town.

The morning was overcast, and it looked like it could rain any time, but we wanted to go and see new things since we were stuck at home yesterday.  So, we went anyway.  The plan was to take highway 101 south, and then once we hit the beginning of the Avenue of the Giants to take that all the way to the end.  The Avenue of the Giants is basically a 25 mile road that follows, and stays within, the Redwoods Parks.  It took about 30 minutes to get there, but it was a nice drive and always with great views.

Once we got there, it was exactly what we expected… magnificent huge trees on all sides of the road.  You feel like you are driving inside a forest (well, you are), and these majestic massive trees are just amazing.  Some areas make you feel like you’re in a Star Wars movie.  We took our time going through, and didn’t have any major stops or any hiking planned, so it took us about an hour to finish the 25 mile or so stretch. 

We did make a stop to see the “Immortal Tree”, which is a tree that is almost 1,000 years old and has been through fire, flooding, lightning strike and even got cut by loggers before but they didn’t finish the job and it “healed”.  Quite amazing.  They have little marks so you can see where the cut was, and also how high the flooding went.  Next to it there was a piece of another tree that looked enormous. 

I had Bella inside the hole of the tree and she could stand normally without hunching, and that was the inner core of the tree. 

There are many trails in the area, so likely very nice spots to be found, but it was all very wet and we didn’t feel like taking a trail today, so we just finished our drive and move on to the next.

From there the goal was to go to Ferndale, and there were two ways, take 101 back up north, which is mainly inland, or take this other road that goes through some smaller towns (according to the GPS), passes next to the ocean for some time, then cuts back inland to Ferndale.  Well, you can guess we took the “adventure” route.

We went towards and took Mattole Road, and the plan was to go through Honedew, Petrolia, Capetown and end up in Ferndale.  That’s exactly what happened, but what we didn’t know was how crazy the road was going to be, and how small those towns were.  We had a total of 50-60 miles to go, but it took over 2 hours to get to Ferndale.  The road we were on was slow. 

We went up mountains, down mountains, had tight turns, hairpin turns, some areas were packed dirt, some areas were one lane, etc.  And when I say there were tight turns, it’s not like a turn here and there, it was one after the other, like non stop turns… it was crazy.  I tried to go a bit faster at one point, but everyone in the truck started feeling sick, so I slowed down. hahahahah…. Glad we had the truck though as the road conditions were not great, and it was good to have the engine brake.  Oh and those “towns”… they were nothing.  Honeydew was a 50 person town, like we saw 3 “houses” or farms.  Petrolia was bigger and had a market\gas station\post office type of one size fits all place.  But, none had anything for us to do, or really consume hahahah… no bathroom to use, no restaurant, nothing.  Another thing we saw a few of were plantations… Cannabis plantations.  And we knew it from the smell.  The girls were like, what’s this smell. Hahahahaha.  We hit a few areas that had them and could tell for sure as we could smell them.  The whole drive was cool, it was through like forest areas, not many redwoods, but more tropical like forest. 

Eventually we made it to the beach area.  That beach is so remote there was nothing there as far as infrastructure.  It’s a beautiful spot though.  And what’s crazy is that the main users of the beach were…

COWS! hahahahaha… for real.  That’s why they say California cows are happier, they were at the  F’ing beach! 

After our 2 plus hour drive, lots of turns, heating up the breaks, stopping to pee on the side of the road, seeing Cannabis farms, cows on the beach, awesome views, we made it to Ferndale.  Oh, did I mention Bella is still planning her farm?  It is a pretty consistent topic on our drives now, it’s cool to hear her excitement, and we are now trying to make sure we can manage expectations because her plans are grandiose. Hahahaha.

Carol found a place to have pizza, the Ferndale Pizza Co.  Or just Pizza Co.  From the outside, it it just looked like an old blue building that was recently touched up.  Not usually a place you’d say looks great.  Carol even missed it as she was looking for it.  They had no sign, just some writings on the windows, and one of the said “Pizza Co” hahahaha. 

When we got in, we could see they had each table “separated” from the next with plastic curtains coming from the ceiling.  Pretty nice actually to see how serious they took this.  It didn’t look awesome, but it was quite effective. 

We ordered our pizza and pasta, some drinks, and everything was great and plenty. 

My pizza was awesome, very cheesy!

Bella’s plate was huge. This was a two pasta plate, and this was just one of the plates.

Carol had the other plate. That’s a lot of food!

We ate, had some good laughs and chatted.  I asked the girls to name the places they could that are in California.  They named Hollywood, LA and San Francisco, and that was it.  They’ll sure increase that by time we are done with California hahahahah. 

We then went to the truck to leave our left overs, get Maggie and then go for a walk around the cool looking Victorian Style downtown. 

It is a pretty little downtown. 

Even the US Bank branch is “in style”.

We didn’t go in here, but it looked interesting.

hahahaha… Visit Ferndale!

Bia was enjoying the different tree, with all the crazy branches… or were they roots?

We got some Ice Cream before heading back home.

When we got back to the campground it was already dark, well it’s dark around 5:30 so it’s not like it was that late.  It was dry, so I decided to pack as much as we could right away, so if it rained tomorrow we would not be packing wet things and getting everything wet.  We got quite a bit of the packing done, and just need the final trailer unhooking, tank flush, and hitching done tomorrow.  Should be quick and I’m hoping we have a window of no rain to do it all.

We all showered and then watched some TV the rest of the night.  We had some of the leftover pizza for dinner.  I tried Bia’s Bacon and Cheese pizza, and it was pretty good actually.

Pretty nice day, lots of driving, awesome views and relaxing night.

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