After Yosemite, I continued my interior route through California. I only opted for this opposed to the coast as I’d seen a good part of the California coast for my birthday a few years ago. It was lovely. Somewhere near Big Sur I had my first encounter with Redwoods; an encounter that I just could not resist in having a second time on this adventure. I’d rejoin the coast up North in Humboldt County, but before that there was much fun to be had.

A few of my friends, old friends that I’ve known since elementary school have ventured to Lake Tahoe, CA. I never knew why, until I visited. I liken the lake to a gem, seriously, a large liquid Aquamarine jewel encrusted by the deep green Sierra Nevada Mountains. It sadly makes Lake Nockamixon look like a dingy mud puddle. It’s a gorgeous place and while I was unaware, it’s no secret for a lot of people are there enjoying all kinds of outdoor summer fun. My friends and I enjoyed the night, catching up, laughing and eating at a restaurant overlooking the lake and setting sun.

I set off bright and early the next day determined to make it to the Pacific Coast. I again chose to avoid the Interstate and in the beginnings of my Rt. 101 excursion I decided to stop at Clearlake. After just being to Lake Tahoe it was comparably not clear at all, but nice to be near water just the same. I stopped at a place called the Boathouse and enjoyed some clams and a beer outside by the lake. I was joined by some uproarious company and was so glad; they were four fifty-something year old people enjoying each others friendship. Our conversation shared insight to their trying lives, yet despite all odds, nothing kept them from their crude jokes and most importantly, their happiness on this fun summer day. In the company of old friends and new, it’s nice to break up the solitude of traveling alone on such an adventure. There are tons of people to be met while traveling, but most are left just as quickly as they come into your life.

Heading steadily North, the landscape changed constantly: from dry hills to not farming, but large scale agriculture as I passed trucks filled with watermelons and mile long fields of Sunflowers on either side of me and eventually ending up in the Redwood Forests. I left the company of friends to be in the company of giants and approaching them in the night they were quite ominous. In the daylight, the forests seem more friendly; fantastic in that they inspire a childlike imagination. Dwarfed by Redwoods, I love the feeling of being so small and equally as insignificant as the tiny tiger lilies that frequent the fern filled forest floor. Sun shines through breaks in the forest canopy, illuminating rays through which glistening spores soar.

While I could gladly become lost in the magic of these forests, I was distracted at the thought of the sea.