Kayak in Campsites at Tomales Bay

At the end of last year, one of my best friends made the effort to plan a trip every month. Booking sites, getting permits etc… I have been lucky enough to share a few of these trips with her.

Last Saturday morning my friends and I left Oak/SF before 8 am to head up to Petaluma, got sandwiches at the Petaluma Market Deli, then onto the Bear Valley Visitors Center to collect our permits and then to Marshall beach to launch.

We rented kayaks from Blue Water Kayaks, great experience and they have dry bags, wet suits and tie downs if you need them. We used the wet suits when we kayaked later in the afternoon but it was warm enough not to need them. We left Marshalls beach around 12 pm.

I didn’t take my camera out all of Saturday, so these pics are all from Sunday morning before we got back to Marshalls beach around 12.

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The tide came up really high in the early morning. We all thought we were going to be underwater, luckily that didn’t happen! tomalesbaykayakcampingIMG_4542tomalesbaykayakcampingIMG_4545tomalesbaykayakcampingIMG_4546tomalesbaykayakcampingIMG_4552

I would love to come out here again! It was a really fun overnight.tomalesbaykayakcampingIMG_4553tomalesbaykayakcampingIMG_4554

Whenever we are in the area we have to hit Wild Flour. The most delicious and fresh baked bread.

The most delicious and fresh baked bread. Cash only so please be prepared otherwise you will be bummin’ hard. We love the Fougasse and the Cinnamon Bread.tomalesbaykayakcampingIMG_4566tomalesbaykayakcampingIMG_4565tomalesbaykayakcampingIMG_4563

What a delicious end to a fun and relaxing weekend!

Other resources:

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Memorial Day Weekend

This last weekend was one for the books.  I had a great time outside with friends, drinking beer, hiking, smelling the ocean air and enjoying life!

It all started on Friday night with an amazing NEW meatball recipe that was so easy peezy and delicious, some wonderful fresh mojitos, chocolate fondue, early birthday celebration and girl time.

Saturday, we drove to San Luis Obispo for the California Festival of Beers! We tried amazing new beers and old favorites! For dinner, we went to Firestone – tri tip sandwich heaven!

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Sunday, Chelsea took us to her new favorite coffee spot in SLO, Scout! The story behind this cute and delish coffee shop is as adorable as the family who owns it! I wish I still lived in SLO so I could hang out at this lil gem all the time.

IMG_7504 IMG_7505 IMG_7506 IMG_7514To truly get our SLO Cal fix we stopped at Montana De Oro. This stretch of coastline is so ruggedly Californian and its one of my favorite places to be.

IMG_7586 IMG_7587 IMG_7585To cap the long weekend off right we had one last adventure on Monday back in the Bay Area! We got up early and headed out to Bolinas for a hike at Alamere Falls! I have had a few friends recommend this hike so I thought it was time to try it! There is lots of poison oak on this trail – so make sure to know what it looks like before you head out! Also, I suggest wearing shoes with good tread as some parts getting to and from the beach can be very slippery.

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Last stop, one of my all time favorites, The Salsalito Taco Shop! Pictured above was a yummy Watermelon Marg!

It was a great weekend filled with fun times and friends.

I am very thankful to all of the Men and Women who have sacrificed so much so that we can enjoy the freedoms we do. Thank you!

* Most photos taken by my beautiful friend C.T.

Guest Post: Big C and Lil’ C take on Point Reyes!

It is your lucky day, Ladies and Gents! My best friend, Chels went away for the weekend to Point Reyes with her main man and she has agreed to share their experience with all of you!

A little introduction on Chels – We have been friends since 2010! Woohooie started as roomies and now I can’t imagine life without her! She is currently working, living and laughing in the South Bay and loves exploring the Bay Area!

The Deets –

Location: Point Reyes National Seashore (Point Reyes, CA)

Plan for full days of exploring and trekking!! Be prepared to be ON YOUR FEET!

Restaurant suggestion: Farm House Restaurant – I got the Grilled Ranch Burger, Niman Ranch Beef topped with Farmstead Blue cheese and avocado! BigC, he got the crab sandwich was a special for the evening…let me tell you, that crab tasted like it was just caught that same day! Mmmmmmmm.

So this trip came about when I expressed to BigC, my longtime boyfriend of almost 5 years (wow, that’s a long time–but is has truly flown by!), that I missed my Southern California roots and that I was in desperate need of a coastal trip.  On that note, for my birthday he got me a trip up to Point Reyes, but suggested we go sometime in January to see the whales migrate down the coast to Baja, Mexico.  Let me tell you, I had been anticipating this trip since September!!
Anyway, we both took this past Friday off from work and detoured up to Petaluma, where our favorite brewery resides, Lagunitas!  We were so ready for the weekend that we were ready to indulge in the Around the World Flight, featuring 16 beers, but were advised we should maybe take it easy since we planned on taking a tour through the brewery, where they served 5 more samples!  So we listened and each got a flight of four beers – mine were IPA variations, of course!
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Saturday we woke early to head out to the Point Reyes lighthouse and whale watch.  We were staying in Olema, at the Point Reyes Seashore Lodge (pricey, but quaint, not to mention the trail head to endless hiking!!). However, a bus had broken down in the middle of the main road and ruined our chances of whale watching anytime soon – they bus tourists in and out from Drakes Beach (Kenneth C. Patrick Visitor Center) to the lighthouse as Winter is actually the peak tourist season due to whale watching! Who would’ve known!? Anyway, instead of waiting around we hit Drakes beach and walked along the coast, climbing on huge branches of driftwood (all were too big to take home and decorate with ceramic flowers unfortunately), watching an elephant seal sleep – we thought he was dead, until we finally headed back to drive out to Tomales Point.
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Tomales Point is the upper peninsula of the Point Reyes coast, and the only way to physically get to Tomales Point, is park at Pierce Point Ranch and hike in 4.7mi Tomales Point Trail! Remember, this is one way only, so really a 9.4mi trip and then some if you find your own private beach like BigC and I did;) This was a wonderful hike, unexposed to the salty air as the ocean and Drakes Bay surround you at all times – oh and the Tule Elk!  Don’t forget that sunscreen though! I rocked SPF70 and still got toastyyyy! But let me tell ya, this hike was one for the bunzzz, man we’re we hurtin’ on the way back!
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Saturday night we had an intimate dinner at the Farm House Restaurant (also a bar – so yes, if you need to watch your OKC basketball you’re all good!) and indulge after a long day.
Sunday the plan was to wake up at 7AM and hit the Coast Trail to Alamere Falls (yes Falls means WATERFALLS!!), however we were in pain from the previous day’s hike and a 8.2mi hike sounded daunting.  So, instead we made it out to the lighthouse and climbed the 300+ steps down (and back up!) to the lighthouse – take about a bunz burner!! And of course we got some whale watching in – we spotted a whole 5 grey whales on their journey south!  They were breeching and frolicking – tails and all – it was pure excitement.
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At this point our muscles had warmed up and we were ready to take on Alamere Falls. We packed some snacks and started along the Coast Trail (Mesa Road trailhead) which literally hugs the coast before turning inland to pass two lakes (one had a rope swing which I imagine would be perfect during the summertime) and finally reach the falls. Climbing down right alongside the falls was exhilarating to say the least. The trail leads to a plateau full of flowing baby falls which drop off over the cliff down to the beach.  We immediately climbed down (careful – loose rock, bring shoes with good grippies!) to the beach to take in the setting sun and plummeting falls.  This was pure heaven.  We took it all in, savoring every minute – sometimes, you have to stop and live in the moment, enjoy the present before it passes you by.
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Until next time, Point Reyes…I’ll see ya with my bestie J:)

Thank you Chelsea!! I can not wait to visit PR! Looks like you had a great time!!

A swell place to dwell

Thankful for the past and present places I have been able to call home

and for the people who help make those places a home.

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Edna Valley, San Luis Obispo (Great Wine Land)

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Point Reyes, California

“Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson