Sunday, May 13, 2012

Crescent City Surf Session

Here are a few clips I pieced together from last Sunday's beach day in Crescent City. Nothing beats waist high peelers, sunny skies and beautiful Far Northern California scenery.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Our First Month on the West Coast

Life in Northern Humboldt County
Sunset Over the Hills and the Pacific Ocean

Fog Rolling in from the Coast

Our local redwood forest.

Curly Redwood Tree

Capt. Gill driving the 'Humboldt Tug'
Pulling Alongside the Fuel Barge

Sunrise over the Ocean with Mountains in the Distance

Eureka's Commercial Waterfront

Woodley Island Marina

Looking South from Houda Point

Camel Rock

Last look at the Surf after a Two hour surf session

Friday, October 14, 2011

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Monday, September 19, 2011

The On-Going Adventures of Ben, Justine and Sparky

 Hey Everyone,
Here are a few pictures and stories from the first couple weeks of vacation. Things are great. The weather has been perfect, waves have been plentiful and the beer is flowing like wine. Enjoy the pictures. I'll have more posted in a few days. It's hard to sit in front of the laptop for too long when sooo much nature beckons.


We sure do know how to pack things into our little Honda Fit.

On our way through a little Southern town, I happened to see a statue honoring great bird dogs. I knew I had to take Sparky to pay tribute.

Fort Smith, Arkansas. Justine has a neat little APP on her phone that helps us find camping along the way. I'm pretty sure this place should have been labeled trailer park, as many on the campers looked pretty permanent. Always a dead give away when an RV is up on blocks and has a fridge outside the camper. I did meet a few funny locals who were dead set on taking me "noodling" (hand fishing for catfish), until a six foot snake cruised up the creek.

Into New Mexico

Driving through the SE states took a long time. Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas, Texas and Oklahoma we miserable to drive through. Those first few days in the car drug on for a while, there is only so much NPR and talk-radio that I can handle before I need to get out and run around in some open spaces.

Apparently the water level of the Santa Rosa Reservoir is a tad lower than normal.

Driving past cows for a couple of days straight in Texas and Oklahoma made me hungry for a decent slab of meat. Justine and I are seem to go all out cooking along the way. All the fresh air makes a fellow ready to chow down on grub and swill beers.

Funny story about this camp-ground. We camped here on Labor Day Weekend, so we knew that crowds were going to be in full effect, but I wasn't prepared for the massive amount of huge Hispanic families. I'm talking like two dozen people crowded into a single camp-site, blasting music and getting hill-billy drunk on cheap beer. Skinny dogs running around and little grubby kids throwing rocks at each other. A weird scene to be sure, but things took a turn South around 2AM-well after the families were tucked into their tents.

I woke up around 2AM to the oddest bass line I've ever heard, mingled with loud profanity laced tirade about test tube babies, 'hoes', white people, and a number of other crazy topics. Justine had been up for a while from the looks of her annoyance. Apparently other people had told them to shut up, but lacked the authority to make it happen. After scheming for a brief time with Justine, I slipped out the back of our site, doubled around through the camp-ground and approached them from the camp-host's site. I strolled up the the offending campers and bathed them in the authoritative light of my 4 D-Cell Mag-Lite (the cop-sized light). I told them that I was the camp-host and that they needed to quiet down immediately or rangers would be woken up. They quieted down immediately, apologized for any inconvenience and I walked off to continue my "rounds". After I cleared their line of sight I killed my light, doubled back to our site (which was about 25 yards from theirs') and crept into our tent.

As I lay there in the dark silence, I could hear them start whispering and talking about the "white-honky-cracker piece of shit surfer dude" who told them to shut up. They were pissed that a "whitey" would tell them what to do and I think the longer they stewed on it, the more convinced they were that they had been had by some random white kid. Before they passed out, they decided that they were going to wake up early and check the campground for "white-people cars" and that punk surfer who played them.

Needless to say, we got back to sleep and then woke up and boogey-ed out of there early and caught a beautiful sunrise over the desert.


Left- I enjoy a fine beer in Santa Fe, NM.
Right- Justine poses in front of one of countless beautiful building.

Wilson, AZ and the Kaibab National Forest

After our powering through New Mexico and most of Arizona, we found a beautiful little National Forest Service campground just south of the Grand Canyon, for $15 we scored a secluded campsite which overlooked a little mountain lake.

Sparky loves swimming. I'm trying to wear him out in the water to give the squirrels back in camp a break.

 Justine ponders the beauty surrounding us.

 Morning coffee on the lake, not a bad way to start the day. After leaving AZ, we drove the rest of the way to the coast and to our favorite campground in Carpinteria CA.

Going Coastal

Nothing is cooler than waxing up a brand new board while waves peel over your shoulder, 50 yards across the sand with nobody out. Stoked!

Our ocean front camp for a few days. I'd say we look pretty happy.
View from Morro Bay State Park Nature Center. Morro Bay SP is pretty awesome, great camping and the town of MB is sweet. Family vacation spot someday?
Random headland along the Big Sur coastline. There is still plenty of open space for those willing to look for it.
This is the cove on the North side of the headland. Tons of stuff to look at, but no footprints!

Sparky loves to play tag on the beach.

 Sweet little motel, 1 block from Ocean Beach San Francisco...Not a bad place to hang out for a few days.
I think I'll put that duck in my stomach! Best roasted duck I've ever eaten...

 I love single fins in the morning.

Nice wave with nobody out, yet. 

We ended up surfing this little gem for a couple of hours. It's a tad bigger than it looks, I definitely got worked over a few times.

I got lucky enough to take a ride on a tugboat bringing in a 375 foot lumber barge. I guess the Chinese are buying up all of our lumber, the local mills can't even afford the wood...Pretty lame situation if you ask me, but the tugboat was cool.
Check out Pat with his hand on the tugboat, we were steaming along side of it at 10kts. Really crazy to be so close to such a huge boat.

Hippies are alive and well on the North Coast. Check out the kinetic jig saw.
Allright everyone, I hope you enjoyed the pictures. I'll post more in the next day or so. Feel free to share the link with your friends and co-workers.