From Santa Rosa to the Coast

December 2, 1994

After enjoying our snow-covered journey cross-country and the afternoon of exploration around the Golden Gate Bridge, we enjoyed a night's rest in Santa Rosa. Since we had a free day before Rod's conference started, we decided to drive to the coast and explore a bit.

We had never been to this area before, so we were anxious to explore. We headed down the Russian River toward the coast.

We moved along the placid river among redwood trees and lots of old camp-type wooden houses looking like those built in the 40's and 50's.

The fall colors seemed to be in full swing here.

Rod in a rather typical pose along the Russian River. When Brenda has a camera, there is no denying it. It was a beautiful and tranquil along the river.

The tranquil Russian River dressed in its fall best. It was "Russian" but certainly not "rushing" on this cool foggy morning. The fog rolling in told us that we were approaching the coast.

We drove along the Russian River all the way to the coast. Along most of the way, a layer of cloud rested near the peak of the ridges.

As the river neared the coast, we reached broad rolling hills with sheep and cattle grazing. At the point where the river reached the Pacific Ocean was the small town of Jenner.

This is a view of the coastal town of Jenner from up on the hill following Highway 1 southward.

This is a view of Jenner from the beach just opposite the town.

We went down to the beach at Goat Rock State Park to look at the rocky coastline, similar to what we have seen in Oregon. There were surfers in wetsuits out in the water.

Further along the coast was Carmet, some of which was right on the cliffs above the sea.

We enjoyed the sound of the surf on the rocks and the smell of the sea. It was also nice to hear the sounds of the gulls and other sea birds.

We drove out onto Bodega Head, which we pretty much had to ourselves. It was a rugged and beautiful area.

I was impressed that he herring gulls seemed quite willing to pose and would let me walk right up to them. I guessed that they hadn't been bothered by people here and exhibited no fear. We enjoyed the gulls in Beaumaris, so this brought back memories.

This is a good example of the contrast between the brown speckled plumage of the immature gull and the pattern of the adult gull. You can see the red spot on the lower part of the adult's bill, which their young peck at to get the adult to feed them.

As we drove along the inlet returning from the Bodega Head, there were lots of paths where you could walk for a view of the coast.

Along the inlet we saw a grey heron, several white egrets, the brown wading birds below, and lots of birds that were similar to the oystercatchers we watched in Wales.

It was a relaxing trip to this tranquil coastal area.

To Altamont

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