Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Northern California & Oregon

I've made it as far as Omaha, a city that exists for me as a stopping point on my way to somewhere else, and this trip is no different. I plan to be back in Detroit by tomorrow, but I have such a backlog of travels to catch up on.

The drive up the coast from San Francisco to Portland was quiet, and delightful. Now that I'd successfully navigated beyond the wrecked portion of CA-1, I spent long hours driving alongside the Pacific Ocean. I was linked up with a friend of a friend for a night's rest in Trinidad, a small town north of Arcata. I was told his house was secluded- to give you an idea, here's his driveway:


I drove in late and had a fairly ridiculous time pitching my tent in his yard in the drizzling rain, to the sound of the ocean nearby. When I awoke, I finally had a full view of my camp site and the surrounding environment.


There was a trail from his backyard down to the coast, where I spent the morning on a grey, hazy day. There was something both beautiful and deeply melancholy about this misty, secluded beach.


Later on that morning, I made it out for an afternoon hike in the Redwood National Forest. From the damp, mossy undergrowth to the towering, ancient trees, this was some of the most amazing landscape I'd ever experienced. It often felt like I was walking through the forest of children's stories, where everything was otherworldly and larger than life.




The next day, I finally made it up to Portland. A city full with great friends, and a much needed respite from a month of day-to-day traveling. It's a place I knew a bit better than most of the other stops on the trip, and gave me a chance to regain my bearings. I have a lot of thoughts about this place, which can be simultaneously so strange and super-ordinary. I'll need a whole separate post to reflect on it.

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