A September 2003 trip
to California by Mary Dickinson
Quote: Traveling through the Redwood Forest on Rt. 101 in California we saw parks of great beauty. Not owning an RV and needing to drive through, but able to stop and enjoy the area, we became familiar with points of interest that explain the giant redwoods.
Hotel | "North Coast Inn"
We played slots for awhile then went to find the hotel. It’s very foggy at night along the coast but eventually we got off at Giuntoli Lane, crossed the highway on an overpass and could see the North Coast Inn as we came around the corner. We had to have the voucher to get the discount. It would have cost $70 without the discount.
The room was clean but the décor was plain. I noticed a coin operated laundry in the hall. We got a quiet night’s sleep. In the morning we were entitled to a free continental breakfast so I ventured to the office for a coffee. On the way I discovered a room with a pool and spa, just what I needed after our long drive so we spent an hour there before breakfast.
Our continental breakfast tickets were also good for $3 off for breakfast in their Acorn Café. I ordered the Blackberry Belgium Waffle. It was beautiful and really delicious with fresh berries and whipped cream. My husband ordered a Western Omelet and said it was good.
We liked our stay so much we came back a week later after visiting our daughters in California. We took the free shuttle to the casino and got our voucher and tried our luck. Mine was better the first time.
Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 18, 2003
Days Inn Arcata
4975 Valley West Blvd
Arcata, California 95521
The giant Sequoias near the Pacific Ocean have habits related to the fog and climate in that area. Fallen, they will spring new trees from their branches; decaying, they will produce a circle of new life around and from the stump. They are fire and insect resistant and reproduce bi-sexually or from cloning. Examples of them in the process of performing those and many other habits that allow them to live for thousands of years are explained by the trail guide on the tour. Not able to resist the urge to fantasize, Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox get into the act. If you're not familiar with them, you will be after viewing the woodcarvings along the trail.
Make a day of it. Have lunch in the big cafeteria inside the building, see the many items for sale in the big gift shop and then see the FREE End Of The Trail Museum. Marylee Smith spent forty years collecting Indian art and artifacts from tribes all over the country. Six large rooms house the collection, one of the largest and most comprehensive in the world. The collections are separated into six different areas of the country. Most include baskets, hunting and/or fishing implements, clothing, jewelry, something to carry the baby in and much more. They reflect nature in the different areas of the country, the lakes, the desert, etc.
Trees Of Mystery is in California about thirty six miles south of the Oregon border on Rt. 101. It is open year round, 8-8 in the summer months and 9-5 in the winter. Adult tickets for the tour are $12, seniors $10, children $5, and children 4 and under are free. Look for the 49' Paul Bunyan and the 35' Babe the Blue Ox. See the biggest wood carving from a single block of the End Of The Trail Indian. You can't miss them.
Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 15, 2003
Trees of Mystery
15500 Highway 101 N
Attraction | "Chandelier Drive Thru Tree"
While driving along US 101 through Leggett, CA, we decided to see some of the fantastic wonders imposed on the Redwoods so we turned off the highway and headed to Drive Thru Tree Road. Along that road we viewed excellent examples of vegetation in the Redwood Forest but it is so curvy and bumpy it's not likely anyone would sensibly exceed fifteen miles an hour.
We came to a tole gate and stopped to pay the $3 admission to the park. Some wild turkeys came out from behind the tole house. When we attempted to drive through them they chortled their guttural gobbles at our audacity, but ambled out of the way just the same.
As we proceeded down a dirt road we came to a clearing and there in the center stood the unabashed disfigured ancient tree still willing and able to let me drive our rented white Malibu through its middle. Of course my husband took a picture with his digital.
We stopped at the gift shop and I bought a strong sling shot for $7.95, but got a 10% discount with the admission ticket. We could have used the picnic area or hiked some of the trails in their 250 acre park, but we wanted to get to our accommodation before night fell.
Member Rating 2 out of 5 on October 16, 2003
Chandelier Drive-Thru Tree/Chandelier Tree)
67402 Drive Thru Tree Road
Leggett, CA 95585
A sign attached to the outside said it appeared in Ripley's Believe It Or Not but that was in 1933. A building is attached to it from behind and has an entrance door so we went in. I pretended to look at the items that were for sale but headed right for the room inside the tree. The sales clerk was about to close for the night when we arrived but she was willing to let us look around.
The gifts were all right. They had some burl items but they are expensive. There were even some gift items for sale inside the tree. I forgot what they were, but I did get a chance to see the room. I noticed the floor had a lot of give under my feet. Platforms were being used for it. There is a quaint looking door leading to the front of the shop from inside the tree and a window on one side of the room. The walls inside the tree were charred as though they had been burned. The ceiling is a fifty foot hole going up inside the center of the tree. There is a light at the top showing the charred walls of the "ceiling".
The tree is alive but it's rotting. It was originally made into a house in 1933 and it had to be rotting then. The tree is taking its own sweet time to rot. Rotting Redwoods are one of the greatest sources for building the exceptional humus that feeds the giant trees of the Redwood Forest. They can be rotting for hundreds of years before they no longer produce leaves.
Other customers came in so we just left. I was really grateful she let us see the beautiful room. It really was like a fantasy.
Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 16, 2003
The Tree House
74800 N Highway 101
Attraction | "The Legend Of Bigfoot"
We walked back to the shop to look at the other chain saw sculptures. I was looking for a little bear holding a child's book as though he was reading it. One was for sale in another shop along the edge of the road with a price of $90. It was painted. He wasn't doing that one at this place. A totem pole, about eight feet high, looking quite authentic, was for sale but my husband objects to purchasing large items when were traveling. We both liked a bear, about three feet high, holding a sign that said "SCRAM". He was $145. A porpoise flipping in the air was $195. A cute little bear wearing a hat and coat was $165.
It amazed me there is wood available to allow all these carvings. We had stopped at other stands and were told no one could cut the trees or pick up wood in the Redwood Forest. It’s against the law. I'm sure it is in areas where the ancient trees have never been harvested. Those carvings are probably not from ancient redwoods or from trees nearby.
They also had driftwood for sale. Picking up driftwood on the beach is also said to be against the law in California, however, I asked a park ranger in Oregon if it was all right and she said it was on that beach but I would have to check concerning other beaches. She also said it had to be of a size that could be carried off the beach. Equipment couldn't be used to remove it.
We didn't see anything we couldn't live without so we went on our way.
Member Rating 2 out of 5 on October 17, 2003
The Legend Of Bigfoot Gift Shop
2500 Highway 101
Garberville, CA 95542