We were able to spend three very relaxing days at the Meadow House located just outside of Ashland on the California/Oregon border. The house sits alone in a valley where meadows flow and disappear into hills covered in trees. The flags of a Buddhist temple are the only break in a wall of green lining the hills around the house. Deer, elk elk and a few snakes kept us company.
See more pictures of the meadowhouse and Ashland here.
In Ashland, OR we met some fun beer enthusiasts and brewers, Larry and Ginger. I was able to tour the Standing Stone Brewery with Larry (who is a brewer there) and sample their drafts. Lane was invited to an event, "Women Enjoying Beer" that Ginger led and got to know some good beer and parring techniques. -Ryan
Larry and Ginger also introduced us to their friend, Caleb, who is one of the owners of Noble Coffee Roasting in Ashland. He gave us a 'cupping' tour of all of the coffees they roast while helping us to understand all of the little varieties and subtleties that can come out of different bean origins and roasting techniques. We also had some very valuable lessons about how to buy 'fair trade' coffee in a way that is acutally fair to the farmer...all very valuable lessons for our future buisness. The staff is extremely knowledgeable and friendly at Noble, if your ever in the area check them out. -Lane
We were able to spend three days in the beautiful Eureka/Humboldt area. Our home was a goat barn at the family farm of David and Sylvia, a retired police chief and legal aid who raise and sell goats. Eisley tested her abilities as a goat herder, and Ryan helped out with feeding time. In the evenings we would all enjoy a huge home cooked meal and great conversation...we never left the table in under 2 hours. We also explored Eureka and Acadia, disk golfing in the park and coffee shop hoping around the historic downtown areas. -Lane
See more pictures of our goat herding days here.
Boomer never seemed so small as we headed north through the redwoods of Humboldt and Eureka area. It truly is breathtaking driving far below the canopy of these ancient giants. We had plenty of opportunity to pull over and enjoy the view as we topped out at about 20 MPH going up some of the hills. We got many a friendly honk as the line of people behind us quickly passed.
This secret beach may or may not be there depending on the season and tide swell. We spotted it only after passing it going north up the PCH just after hwy128, south of Fort Bragg and Mendocino. Mendocino, by the way, is no place to fill up on gas at $4.98 a gallon. -Ryan
From Fort Brag to Crescent City every sign read "Campground Full". With an average of 60 spots per site at $35 a night (as opposed to $20 just last year) California is apparently making $2100 a night, per campground. Most of these sites are staffed only by one ranger from 8am-8pm. I am in the process of writing my congress man, with California's budget at heart, offering to run the site for half that. I feel an even thousand would be fair for 12 hours work. Realizing we couldn't afford to camp in our State Parks anymore, we found an independently run site with free showers and bathrooms for $21 a night... -Ryan
See more pictures of our camping adventures here.
One the things to do before you die list (number 137 I believe) is ride a horse on the beach. This dream was realized for Lane and I one Tuesday afternoon on the shores of San Francisco. Marina, a close friend of mine, worked at the stables and was able to take us out. My first time on a horse. I view it as a total success as I remained on the horse the entire time. -Ryan
One of the best Fourths ever! We truly are blessed with friendship. Some friends, Dan and Becca own a sail boat docked in Sausalito. So we joined them for a cruise.
We sailed around Angel Island, had some sandwiches on the water, and docked again in time to enjoy a day in the park. BBQ, live music and a game of Hearts.
We found a strangely empty bench in a crowded park and watched the fireworks over the water. 10am-10pm and never a dull moment.
After the madness of Pride simmered down we went out and looked around my old stomping grounds, a walk in Golden Gate park, self guided tour of the Upper Haight including some of my coffee shops, Embarcadero Farmers Market, and the piers.
There is a free coin museum with working coin arcades from the twenties and thirties at pier 45 on the Embarcadero where for a few quarters the entertainment is endless.
See more pictures from San Fransisco (and the rest of California) here.