Greetings to all,
Well, another month has past and we found ourselves not that far from were we started the month, geographically, but worlds away from that place. But before we get into that, let's correct an oversight we have another member of our traveling troop!!! Now, our team includes Fred and Suzi (the human members) plus Ralf and Dani (the canine members). That's right, our
ferocious fluffy junkyard dog has a "little" sister. Dani is a sweet Golden Retriever about four times Ralf's size and weight with not a mean bone in her body. Dani is so amazingly patient with Ralf, us, and everything. She isn't very brave but is very smart and such a beautiful dog. Being born and bred in the desert, it took a little while for her to figure out what to do with lakes, ponds, and streams but she has learned they are perfect Golden puppy playthings.
While lakes, ponds, and streams are okay with Dani, she never got the hang of the Pacific Ocean and its constant lapping waves. Seashells, driftwood, and rocks were another matter, those things she liked. Dani and Fred really enjoyed their daily walks on the beach at Trinidad, CA (Suzi and Ralf weren't as enthusiastic about sand between their toes). The former fishing village, Trinidad is where we started the month. It is a lovely little hamlet that may have been discovered but we were there before the "hoards" and enjoyed its quiet sleepy feel for a long weekend. We also had the good fortune of a couple of sunny afternoons, a rare event for Northern California this June were there were no100 degree readings until the last few days of the month.
One of our outings from Trinidad was to the Six Rivers National Forest's Supervisor Office in Eureka. It was a good meeting but the highlight of the day was lunch at the Samoa Cookhouse. What a hoot! The Cookhouse advertises itself as the last remaining logging camp eatery in the States. We walked in and were shown to a corner of a red and white checked tablecloth covered bench-table. Our menu selections were to eat or not to eat. Although lunchtime, the meal was more like dinner - soup, salad, bread, pot roast, potatoes, carrots, pinto beans, and cake. And the servings just kept on coming. Good food. Good time.
But then it was back to reality as we returned to the forest. This month saw us in some of the most isolated conditions we have ever experienced . One of the best things about having an recreation vehicle (RV) is its self-contained features. (Suzi's favorite RV features are the flush toilet and hot shower.) A major concern for all RV owners is finding a legitimate place to dump the wastes from the toilet and showers. So this month's challenge was coordinating our research's base camp with those all important places to dump. Such are challenges of this traveling troop.
Another challenge was Suzi's health. The continuous cold, wet weather resulted in a visit to the clinic in Happy Camp, where a nurse sees patients most days as the doctor only drops in once a week. The diagnose was pneumonia. A chest x-ray was ordered to confirm. The nearest x-ray machine was in Yreka, a mire two hours and 60 miles drive! The diagnosis was confirmed but a semi-relapse two weeks later sent us to the ER in Redding were we are ending this month. Not sure of the exact cause of Suzi's poor health, the doctor considered more "aggressive" action. A promise to visit our Tucson lung doctor upon our return home was made and accepted, some type of super shot given, and we were released to go back to our puppies. And Suzi seems to be returning to her former self.
One problem with Suzi's condition was it influenced her actions. One example - she forgot to remove the paper between the cheese slices in Fred's ham and Swiss cheese sandwich. Well, Fred had his week's worth allotment of fiber that day.
Discounting health problems, there were some outstanding experiences, too. Things like watching a herd of elk with their calves gracefully crossing the roadway near Happy Camp, the clusters of horse and riders galloping across Clam Beach north of Eureka, surveying Juanita Lake June 15 in a blizzard, the forest service host at Hayward Flat campground with WiFi (Fred's idea of a prefect campsite), and having the huge snow capped Mt. Shasta pop into view at the most unexpected moments. There were, also, some experiences we have come to expect such as overworked and greatly caring Forest Service folk, generous and friendly local folks, and
miserable and frightening roadways.
You may have heard of the rash of earthquakes experienced along the west coast. Well, we didn't experience any ground-shakin' but, as a matter of fact, the tsunami warning occurred in Trinidad a few days after we left. Now, we should explain California's Coastal Mountains aren't made up of the same "stuff" as say the Sierra Nevada mountains. While the Sierra Nevada's are super hard granite rock, the Coastal Mountains are primary Franciscan sandstone (composed of ancient ocean floor) which tends to crumble and slide, not a good thing for the many miles of two lane roadways carved out of the mountainsides. To counter the problem the Highway
Department has developed this strange looking technique. It seemed many steep road cuts were laced with a network of silver pipes and black hoses. We learned the purpose of this was to help drain water from the hillside so it doesn't produce landslides.
Besides all these fun experiences and observations, we did get some work done. The Six Rivers, Klamath, Trinity, and Shasta National Forests were completed and Fred is preparing them for the website. July will see us in the Lassen, Modoc, and maybe start the Fremont, in Oregon. Here's hoping you are enjoying your summer as much as we are ours.
Suzi and Fred