California Bus Trip
February 25-March 4, 1977
It was a scenic, historical adventure all the way, south via Redwood Highway down the North Fork Smith River canyon to Crescent City, stopping at Jedediah State Park, then onto Eureka Inn, fifty-one year old elegant, Old English Style. A sumptuous dinner at the Old Samoa Cookhouse—family style, used by the loggers since about 1900.
Saturday: Driving just south of Eureka paralleling Highway 101 are the thirty-three miles of towering redwoods, the world famous “Avenue of the Giants.” Along through this winds the Eel River, at times in a deep canyon. We felt the adventure of history along the rugged picturesque coast, as far back as 50 years after Columbus discovered America, when the Spaniards, then the English landed along the shores—as told by Helen Weiser as we went along. Also, about Russians who built Fort Ross in 1812, with the help of native Alaskans. Today the descendents of the early day residents still live in the general vicinity. The winding highway continued along the Mendocino Coast to Bodega Bay.
Sunday: There was sight-seeing at Pt. Reyes National Seashore with many shore birds, egrets and herons. Lunch was at Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco.
The next two days we explored Carmel area: Monterey Bay made famous as the site of John Steinbeck’s novel “Cannery Row,” where we ate lunch. History was relived by tours of the Old Spanish Custom House and Stevenson House. We were not too late to view the romance of the Monarch Butterflies in the Pines. Pt. Lobos State Reserve along the south shore of Carmel Bay with tree clad headlands is unequaled with viewing of Cormorants and the noisy California and Steller’s sea lions. The visit to Carmel Mission, the second in California built by Father Junipero Serra in 1770, told the story of life of the padres and Indians. Shopping and lunch that afternoon in Carmel Village was unique and fascinating. Then we went south for two tours to fabulous San Simeon Hearst Castle, and spent Wednesday night at beautiful Morro Bay located next to a State Heron Refuge. Helen and Alvin Lynch visited us, having walked over from the State Trailer Park where they were camping.
Thursday and Friday: We traveled north on I-5 through the San Joaquin valley to Willows, Sacramento Valley, Olive Groves, Shasta Dam, Trinity Mtns., Mt. Shasta, Dunsmuir and Siskiyou Mtns. and into Oregon with warmer sunshine.
To sum up this brief report: 1. We were glad to be back where there is rain, and 2. We were blessed with an amiable, able Greyhound Bus driver, Merv Merlin, and Bronson Travel escort, young Joe Silence, who set the mood with song for friendship, laughter and fun for each and everyone. —Helen Weiser and Jane Hilt
The trip down highway One in California was made more interesting, at least to me, because Helen Weiser, one of the leaders, had done research on points of interest and some history of the areas. And thanks to Bronsons for making copies of her history piece for distribution. Her information added to the enjoyment ci the trip. I wish more leaders of trips would do a little research as it adds so much to a trip. —Maxcine Williams
California bound were Buck and Grace Carter, Evelyn Devereaux, Gertrude Eaton, Ruth Edwards, Irene Flynn, Jane Hilt, Alelia Linscott, Helen Mathiesen, Daisie Niccolls, Margaret Park, Hazel and Russ Peck, Helen Rathday, Myrtle Smith, Betty Mae Stamm, Helen Weiser and Maxcine Williams. —Helen Weiser