This blog will be in the main about hunting, fishing, the preparation and cooking of it. BUT not only. I have in the last couple of months become interested in bread baking, so every now and again it will contain what I have been doing in this direction. It will also contain my travels far and near, with and without food (though in the main I don't do hungry).It will also be about the wonderful countryside in which I live and the animals and birds that are part of it and my life.
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
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
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
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!