The Storks of Böbs

The Storks of Böbs
A Very Fine Pair

Gone West 14

“This land is your land, this land is my land
From California, to the New York Island
From the redwood forest, to the Gulf Stream waters
This land was made for you and me”

Woody Guthry was a singer songwriter of my youth, we had made an attempt at folk singing and Woody along with the likes Pete Seeger, Tom Paxton and other wandering minstrels were the singers of the music that we loved and knew so well. The land that they sang about is still out there, you just need to get off the couch and find it.
The land isn’t all it seems, the dust bowl made by mans greed, the Land that was robbed from the original owners and the mismanagement of the water resources. Here in Visalia, the signs warning against the later are everywhere, the water is unfit to drink! Through intensive use of fertilisers and pesticides, the farmers have poisoned the waters of the lakes, rivers and reservoirs, we were warned about this at the campsite and again big signs at Applebee’s also warned against drinking it. So though the land is green and fruitful it has come at a price.

At Visalia, we also met some other Jucy’s, though these were newer models (notice the slimmer lines and in one case a total new ball gown, though a little garish, I like ours, you sure as dam ain’t goin’ to lose it in a Safeway’s car park).

The Jucy Collection
We set off on a warm morning in the direction of the coast first on HW 198, turning South onto the 41 at Lemoore before crossing the Interstate HW 5 at Kettlemen City and heading to the Pacific over the Californian Coastal Ranges. We travelled through typical Californian farmstead’s , massive cattle farms were the cows never see a green field they are all kept in massive covered pens and fed on silage and Chemicals to make them put on weight quickly and to keep them healthy (sic)! Also of course the miles and miles of orange, cherry, almond and olive “orchards” (my idea of an orchard certainly doesn’t look like these.

We next started to rise over the last barriers and the typical inner Californian landshaft.

We eventually arrived at the Highway that we had started on at the beginning of our trip Highway 101, but we just crossed right on over and headed for the last of our scenic routes, the South Part of Highway 1. We arrived at a town called Cambria and decided to stop off to post our last picture post cards and by luck have lunch.

Cambria is a wonderful small town, full of art shops, wonderful little diners and café’s it was a wonderful piece of luck that we found this place. We lunched in a smashing little place called Robins, it is full of tasteful art and also tasteful food, I had a Mexican/Indian cross over- a very nice vegetable soup and North Indian curry burrito combo, Linda had the same soup and a Mexican spiced chicken and shredded red cabbage Taco. We both agreed a wonderful light lunch. Even the toilets had an arty touched. We wandered the streets for a little while before heading further North on the HW1.

People (Mostly Americans) have asked us, when we say we have visited this coast, if we visited Hearst Castle, my reply is always the same, why would I? I come from the land of “real” castles, Northumbria, if I wanted make believe I would go to Disneyland, also if I wanted to see Zebras etc. I would go to Africa!

But just a little way past the “mockery” is a real gem; the Sea Elephant beaches of Piedras Blancas, these monsters are pulled up on the sand cooling themselves by spraying sand. In the main they are females, but there are a few young males joisting with one another, they will need this for the coming season when the real big fella’s come ashore to mate, it is then that fur really does fly.

We headed further along the wonderful coast with its rocky inlets and guano covered sea boulders, the kelp beds that harbour the Californian Sea Otters. It is rightly named the one of Americas dream routes, a must if you come to California.

It was getting on to 16.00 when we passed Big Sur, we turned a corner and almost missed a campsite, they had been very scares  along HW1 until now so we decided to make a quick about turn and drive down a steep incline to the Fernwood Campsite, again we had luck, we got last pitch, I am now coming to believe we cannot put this down to the “Luck of the Irish”, I am sure it is more to do with the Luck of the Geordies”. We got the pitch right across from the entrance office (an old school house). The toilets and showers right next to the offices, wunderbar

As it was far too early to have dinner, we decided to climb the stairs up to the bar and restaurant, from the outside terrace you could look down through the redwoods to the campsite and river below, smoke was wafting through the trees and up into the evening air. I got chatting to a couple of bikers, they did inform me something that I had come to realise, we were seeing it the wrong way round, the best way to do Big Sur is North to South. Ah well next time! (There is still a little bit of the coast going south that I have not travelled). At the resort they cater for all types, they have fixed tents, they have rooms, cabins and bunkhouses as well as RV and tent pitches. A very nice site, but get there early.
We went down the wooden steps to our pitch and got dinner ready, it was to be spaghetti tonight.
If you look closely you will see what seems at first glance a can of Coca-Cola, wrong since we started out on our trip, Linda has been getting a taste for MY beer, this was a can of Bud! Humph, is nothing sacred?

Evening meal eaten, I went in search of the dish-washing facilities, these were sited on the other side of the river quite a way away (not miles, but a way away, if you understand that measurement). We decided we would do them next morning after breakfast; we would drive around (a drive through dish wash). We also noticed another Jucy it was sited on the riverbank just before crossing the bridge, as we got closer to San Francisco they seemed to be coming out of the woods, in this case literally.
There is even an Albino Redwood on the site, bit like a blonde Irishman!

Breakfast was as usual quite a light fare, I do believe I just had a coffee sitting by the river bank, a Blue Jay did pop by to see if there was anything on the go, but soon hopped off when he found no easy pickings, in fact no pickings at all.

The other Jucy

Notice the footprints in the tiles!
Dishes washed, we set off for our next stop, Old Rowdy Yates stomping ground, Carmel by the sea, head ‘em up move ‘em out!

1 comment:

  1. If you are familiar with the film, "Citizen Cane," then you would be interested in Hearst Castle since the movie is based on the life of Willian Hearst. In the film the main character built Zanadu, a huge, overbuilt estate. In real life, Hearst built Hearst Castle. It is also of interest because Hearst employed the noted female architect, Julia Morgan.