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Campsite Photo Trip - 2013

Angry Birds

We get more Northern California State Park campgrounds and run into a few angry birds!

Real angry. But that comes later.

When I am on the road I keep a sort of schedule. About once a week I process photos of all the campgrounds I have visited and write a blog post. I back up all the photos to portable hard drives just to be safe.

But I did things a little out of order while camping at MacKerricher last weekend. I organized all the campground photos on Saturday, but that afternoon I walked the park and took pictures. Then I wrote the blog on Sunday.

Here is MacKerricher.

Mac-Kerricher-Sign

A large campground with 143 sites, it sits just north of Fort Bragg. I stayed in site 90.

Mac-Kerricher_090

Most of the sites are like that. Number 87 was a big one.

Mac-Kerricher_087

The group area comprises sites 1 – 20.

I rode my bike down to the beach.

Mac-kerricher-Beach-2 Mac-Kerricher-Beach-1

Clouds were building on the western horizon but the weather had been great for the past couple of days. There is also a small lake next to the beach, Lake Leone I believe. It even had a boat ramp of sorts.

Mac-Kerricher-Boat-Ramp

Just paddle through the marsh to reach the lake.

The temperature dropped as the clouds became thicker. I made some comfort food and retired to my tent.

Macaroni-Dinner

Cheesy goodness with a dash of habanero sauce to keep me warm.

The plan for Sunday was to make a day trip to visit two more State Parks so after writing and posting the last blog I headed out.

I popped the flash card that I use for campsite photos into my camera. I formatted it like I always did when everything has been processed and backed up.

As I was driving south a sickening thought hit me. The MacKerricher photos were on that card. Rats!

I pulled over. I remembered that I had a free file recovery program on my laptop. I ran it and it said the flash card was empty. There was an option for a deep scan so I tried that. 20 minutes later it listed the files it had found. MacKerricher was all there.

The program is called Recuva. Get the free version. It can recover pictures from a formatted card as long as they are not overwritten, meaning that you have not taken new pictures with that card yet.

Anyway, I was feeling better as I made my first stop.

Russian-Gulch-Sign

A nifty little coastal park with 30 sites. I was digging number 25.

Russian-Gulch_025

That tree sort of drapes over the picnic table.

There is a beach next to the campground under a bridge. I walked out on the headlands to get this view.

Russian-Gulch-Bay

Looks cold. Turning around, this is what you see.

Russian-Gulch-Ocean-View

I think I will pass on the swim.

I continued south a few miles.

Van-Damme-Sign

Same deal. A campground in a canyon with a beach.

Van-Damme-Beach

There are 74 sites here like number 18.

Van-Damme_018

Along with a little creek and a visitor center.

Van-Damme-Creek Van-Damme-Visitor-Center

I headed back to my campsite as the rain began to fall. It was still raining in the morning. I kept hoping it would stop but I finally gave up and packed up soaking wet.

Mac-Kerricher-Campsite

I headed about 170 miles south to Bodega Bay with one stop on the way.

Manchester-Sign

There are 41 sites here. The loop closest to the beach had some good ones like number 40.

Manchester_040

The sun was trying to break through so I crossed my fingers and kept heading south.

Manchester-Beach

I arrived at Bodega Dunes and set up camp.

Bodega-Dunes-Sign

Sort of...

Drying-Out

Tuesday I awoke to the sun and as I write this on Monday it has been sunny ever since. Yippee!

I went for a short hike. There is a trail from my site, number 28, off into the dunes.

Bodega-Trail-1

I followed a deer.

Deer-Print

I heard the waves crashing all night so I figured the beach should not be to far away. After about a mile of twisty trail I topped a ridge.

Bodega-Dunes-View

The beach can wait. I want some breakfast. So I headed back.

Bodega-Dunes-Landscape Bodega-Trail-3 Bodega-Trail-4

I figured that pancakes would hit the spot.

Bodega-Breakfast

Even my tent was happy to be in the sun.

Bodega-Tent

There are 98 sites here and depending on your preference you can have sun, like my site number 28.

Bodega-Dunes_028

Or shade, like number 26.

Bodega-Dunes_026

It's all good.

After walking Bodega Dunes I drove 3 miles north to Wrights Beach.

Wrights-Beach-Sign

This is a small park with only 27 spots. So why is it always full?

The beach.

Wrights-Beach

Several sites are right on the sand. Check out number 8.

Wrights-Beach_008

Here is another view.

Wrights-Beach-Campground-View

Beachfront property for $35 per night. Make your reservations early.

Wednesday I drove south a whopping 6 miles to Doran Park.

Doran-Sign

Following the State's example they doubled their prices recently to $32 per night. Thanks.

Doran is located on the south end of Bodega Bay, actually on a spit of land that ends at the jetty.

There are 128 campsites here. I stayed in number 5 for two nights.

Doran_005

Roughly 10% of the sites are first come, first served. The rest you can reserve online or by phone.

I stayed topless.

Doran-Campsite

Loved it.

Here are some views of the beach and jetty.

Doran-Beach-View-2 Doran-Beach-View-1 Doran-Picnic-Area

After walking around the campground on Thursday I drove around the bay.

Element-at-Bay

And checked out the boats.

Bodega-Bay-Marina

I like fishing boats.

Fishing-Boats-1 Fishing-Boats-2

I even found one I could possibly afford.

Old-Boat

Perfect.

Be aware that it does get windy here. Some of the locals call it Blowdega Bay. The winds pick up in the afternoon and the two days I was there it reached about 35 mph.

The only real issue I had with the campground was the condition of the road.

Potholes

Yeah.

I used my charm and the next day they put up this sign.

Road-Sign

Good. I like it when people listen to me instead of running away with scared looks on their faces.

Friday morning I continued south another 150 miles.

Drove over this.

Golden-Gate

Passed through this.

Tunnel

And ended up on this.

Forest-Road

Big Basin State Park was full on Friday and Saturday nights so I found a county park that had an opening. For $35. Is that the new going rate to camp around here?

Anyway, I spent Saturday processing photos and arrived here at Big Basin on Sunday. But those pics are for the next blog.

But back to the Angry Birds. I ran into a pair of them at Doran.

They were circling around each other, flapping their wings and calling each other rude names. I decided to help.

I got them separated and had a talk.

The first one's name was "Araack". I think. It's hard to tell.

Bird-1

The second one was "Squawk".

Bird-2

They were fighting over who had first dib's on the unused bait the fishing boats would toss over the side upon returning to port.

I said that there are a lot of fish in the sea, maybe they could share.

Araack told me to stop using such worn out clichés and Squawk just pooped.

I continued on, undaunted.

How about alternating who eats first, I told them. Alternate days.

They half-heartedly agreed. Good, I said, we are making progress. Now how about hopping up on those two rocks and acting like friends.

They did, but it was not what I was hoping for. They turned their backs on each other and Squawk hunched down his shoulders.

Angry-Birds

I had had enough of them. I started walking away but Squawk reached out.

He said he appreciated what I tried to do and invited me over for dinner.

"I am in space 107", he said. "I've got a couple of half-full bags of chips and a few dead herring. You can't miss my place. I even have a red kite flying out the back. But don't take too long as I have a hot date tonight".

I assured him I would be there as soon as I finished walking the campground, which only took another 20 minutes.

I found his place but was astonished to see him leaving already. He said I took too long and mumbled something about stupid humans.

I snapped a quick pic as he left.

Doran_107

Well, I learned my lesson. Never trust a gull with a hot date.

Regards, Park Ranger

Comments

I sense your trip is coming to an end? Excellent information! How is the foot you drilled a hole in?!?

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