Point Reyes National Seashore

We had the luckiest day of weather for our visit to Point Reyes National Seashore. We were able to see the beautiful view of the shoreline and the lighthouse under sunshine and blue skies...a rarity in these parts at this time of the year, we're told.

Along the way we saw lots of barns. This one is just outside the campground.

It was a half hour drive to get to the Point Reyes National Seashore, and there were ranches all along the way.

Once inside the park, there were several that were designated "historic," and one with a sign that said it was founded in the 1850's!

From the visitor center, it was still 21 miles to the lighthouse over a really rough and winding road.

The view from the parking lot was incredible.

It was about a quarter-mile hike to the lighthouse from here. Along the way, we spotted a doe and her fawn grazing in the grass at the cliff's edge.

The fawn still had its spots.

It wandered off toward the cliff's edge (not really sure if it was a cliff or just a steep embankment), and out of sight.

Then mama called it back.

You can see she's fitted with a nifty tracking collar. And the fawn came back.

Precious. Also, we saw some Torrey Pines. There is a reserve for the Torrey Pines down in LaJolla, California, which is located in San Diego County. Mike and I are both native Californians. Mike grew up in San Diego County. My family moved there when I was 11 (I'm a military brat). My dad deployed to Vietnam three times, and so I was able to stay there until Mike and I married and moved away in 1975. And all of that to say that we didn't know the Torrey Pines grew in this area, and so it was kind of a treat to see them.

Farther up the hill, we could look back at the view and see it more in context. Do you think this is the "bend" in California that can be seen on a map?

Eventually, we reached the lighthouse.

We felt extremely lucky to have such a clear view.

The lighthouse was closed, but that was probably just as well. I'm not sure my knee was up to doing these stairs.

Here's some information about the lighthouse if you're interested.

We were standing on a sort of perch on the rocks above the lighthouse. There, the sandstone walls were pockmarked like coral.

While we were there, the fog began to move in, obscuring the view.

From there, we drove down to North Beach. Looking back, you can now see that the cliff where the lighthouse is located is nearly obscured in fog.

There was a wonderful bloom of wildflowers all along the road leading out to the lighthouse. Here's one of the thistles I showed the other day, only this one is fully opened.

I don't know most of these.

This next one is another California poppy. We've realized there is some diversity among the poppies, as you'll see in a minute.

These next ones are yellow lupine. I've only seen purple ones before.

These purple jobs had an herby scent. The flowers look a little like sage, the leaves like mint. It doesn't smell like either.

Here's the larger variety of ice plant I mentioned in my post of a day or two ago. These little "leaves" are about the size of one's finger. If you break them in half, the dyes from the plant will stain your clothing and shoes.

After leaving the lighthouse, we had lunch at a cute little "Farm Deli". They had good seafood and oysters from a nearby oyster farm. We enjoyed that very much.

Growing in their parking lot were the California poppies we're accustomed to seeing in our area. They have a larger flower, brighter orange (and not two-toned), with a longer stem.

Driving back through Petaluma, we went through the "Historic District". There, we saw some charming old homes. These are the sorts of homes we see in Northwest Portland.

Also, this building in the historic downtown area of Petaluma. That store below is called "Tall Toad Music." Gave us a chuckle.

And then shortly after that, we were back at the RV. We relaxed the rest of the afternoon, and went around for another walk.

We have one more night here and then we'll be moving on to Fort Bragg, California, where there is a "glass beach." I've seen it in pictures, and it went straight to the top of my bucket list. I'll have more to say about that later. Today we're going to visit a quilt shop in the area known as "Quilted Angel." Their website boasts:

Quilted Angel is one of the Bay Area's largest quilt shops. We are located in beautiful, historic downtown Petaluma, California. The shop is over 3,500 square feet and has over 5,000 bolts of fabric. 

And you know I gotta see that. Fortunately, I saved my pennies before leaving on this trip, and I still have money to spend.

19 comments from clever and witty friends:

works4me said...

Thank you so much for taking us on this trip with you. I think these are some of your best pics. I love the first barn and the Torrey Pines pics especially. Such beautiful architecture, too.

Of course, I can't wait to see how the trip to the quilt shop goes.

Debbie said...

Very cool pines....but that 30 story climb is a prize winner. Can't imagine having to take that trek to work or home. Think I would have welcomed the fog about then :) But the vista is beautiful! I am enjoying every blooming thing you discover. And heading for beach glass hunting......pick up a handful. The palette would make up as a perfect quilt:)

WoolenSails said...

Another great place to stop, love the views and I agree, those stairs look a bit much.
That collar sure looks awkward, usually I see tags, but never something that big.
I think that is a place I could spend weeks, outdoor and the historical places.


crazy quilter said...

Wow that view ! It is beautiful. I am with you I probably would not have done the stairs either, so probably best it he lighthouse was closed. I await your Quilt Store review and pictures, lots of pictures! Have fun and safe travels, with little or no traffic.

Vroomans' Quilts said...

Oyi - I would never make all those stairs! My fear of height plus those, I would kitty sit in the RV thank you. Love all the blooming things and the historical homes/buildings. Thank you for sharing.

claudia said...

Close to my old stomping grounds, I grew up about 90 miles south of there, I still have family in Santa Rosa which is relatively close to Petaluma. I miss that place!
I hope you aren't too disappointed in "Glass Beach". My daughter and I went a few years ago and the glass is reduced to teensy weensy little pieces. The place has been picked pretty clean even though there is a sign that says don't take any. It is still a beautiful place to visit. Fort brag is one of my old haunts from my commercial fishing days. I miss that place too and still have several friends there.
Have fun! I know you are enjoying yourselves!

Patricia said...

Thank you for the tour and wonderful picture. Hope to see this sometime in our travels.

Motherdragon's Musings said...

Again thank you for sharing. I almost smelt the salt air, and felt the fog.
Those poppies sure are pretty. Can't wait for "glass beach"

Kate said...

That would have been quite a climb to visit that lighthouse. But the views are killer! Very pretty.

Dana Gaffney said...

I would have skipped that climb even if the lighthouse was open, it makes me think the lighthouse keeper must have been in great shape.
The glass beach should be very cool, sea glass is so pretty.

SJSM said...

I made that climb. Definitely needed a few rest stops on the way back, but I made it! Actually, once you are down there what is your rcource. The lighthouse does have spectacular views. But the ones higher up have a greater vista. I'm sure you read all about the San Andreas fault and the 1906 eartquake. Interesting stuff. You are crossing from one plate to the other. Looking forward to your next post.

piecefulwendy said...

Oh my, those views are breathtaking, and I'm sure that stair climb would be breathtaking as well, but in a whole different way :-) Not sure I'd want to try that either. Can't wait to hear about the quilt shop and the glass beach!

Rosemary Rivas said...

While reading Bloglovin' this morning there was an article about Barn Quilts, so I looked them up in CA. There apparently is a trail in Lake County and Plumas County. Just thought you'd like to know. Today, we're off to Ventura to start our Shop Hop on the way.

BillieBee (billiemick) said...

I'm sure enjoying your travels. Great photos!!

Ioleen said...

Loved reading this post. The views are amazing. I could not have done those stairs.

quiltzyx said...

More fabulous photos! But OMG those stairs would definitely be breath - TAKING indeed.
We've had some hot days here in SoCal over the last couple of weeks, but I was surprised to still see some wild poppies on the freeway on-ramp verge.

Quiltdivajulie said...

Terrific post! I would not have even attempted all those stairs - my knee would have SCREAMED at me. Would it be okay if I share your barn photos on the book blog? (watermarked with your name, of course)

Brown Family said...

Another interesting light house. It is always a pleasure to see wild life! THe poppies are beautiful! So vibrant!

I have an internet friend that lives in Petaluma. Seeing the historic homes and buildings is very interesting.

Kelsey said...

Could the little mystery purple flowers have been cat mint?