Thursday, September 30, 2010

Vacation Day 8: Wine Country, The Sonoma Valley

On our way back to San Francisco we drove through the Sonoma Valley and were treated to beautiful scenery of rolling hills and vineyards.
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Along the way we stopped at a couple of vineyards for wine tastings...a delicious end to a wonderful vacation.
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Sunday, September 26, 2010

Vacation Day 7: A Morning at Crater Lake

Before heading back to California we got up early to watch the sunrise over Crater Lake.
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As the sun rose higher in the sky the blue water of Crater Lake was slowly revealed.
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After viewing the sunrise we drove the 33 mile road that circles the lake stopping at several points along the way.

The first stop was Discovery Point where the sign was still coated with a bit of snow. The snow will start falling in ernest within the next couple of weeks. Crater Lake gets over 500" each year.
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Wizard Island from Discovery Point
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Wizard Island is an old volcanic cinder cone
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Wildflowers with Crater Lake in the background
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Yes, the water really is THAT blue!! Is has visibility of 140 feet.
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Clark's Nutcracker
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A Golden-Mantled Ground Squirrel surveys the lake.
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Our final glimpses of stunning Crater Lake
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Friday, September 24, 2010

Vacation Day 6: Crater Lake National Park

On the way to Crater Lake we saw this lovely river.
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A light snowfall greeted us upon our arrival at Crater Lake National Park. When we got to our room at the lodge and looked out the window we saw a beautiful rainbow, but in this case I guess it should be called a snowbow.
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Outside the lodge
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Inside the lodge
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Here are a few pictures from our first hike at Crater Lake on the Castle Crest Wildflower Trail.
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We also stopped at several overlooks. The first few pictures show Phantom Ship.
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Crater Lake at Twilight
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Part of a Ranger led Discussion about Crater Lake during the Twilight hour

Monday, September 20, 2010

Vacation Day 5: Hidden Beach & Tide Pools

Not only is this beach hidden from sight until you are standing on it, but the trail to get to it is also very obscure. We were extremely lucky to find it. Photobucket

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After hiking to the end of the trail we found that we had Hidden Beach all to ourselves. What a gem! This was one of our favorite excursions of the trip.
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My seaweed photo collection
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Next we drove through Jedidiah Smith State Park on a one lane road so narrow that it sometimes felt like the side mirrors of the car were going to scrape the bark off the trees. In places the road had a dark, mysterious feel to it which added to the ambiance.
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My sweet husband with a beautiful quote by Shakespeare.
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While at J.S. Park we hiked a little trail down to the Smith River where we got a great view of the Redwood trees.
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Later that same day we hiked a charming trail in Redwood National Park called the Brown Creek Trail.
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Clover-like sorrel and mosses carpet the forest floor...
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Along with ferns and skunk cabbages
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Our last stop of the day was to visit some tide pools at low tide.
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