After spending several weeks in Malibu, we headed north, still in California – what a big state! We stopped at Yosemite for a day, staying just outside and driving in at dawn, watching the sun rise through the amazing-ness of Yosemite. The girls proclaimed this the best park ever! (Later they debated their favorite National Park with a park ranger – Yosemite vs. Yellowstone, the National Park ranger said they didn’t like to mention the other “Y”). We hiked up 1000 vertical feet, and to use my daughter’s favorite word – beautiful! One day was enough for us and the crowds though.
We stopped in Napa, toured a bit and hiked some. The favorite tour for the girls – the Jelly Belly factory! Seemed a bit un-Napa-like, but an entertaining afternoon. Next stop was the Redwoods, we camped in a Redwood forest – spooky and pretty all at the same time. Hiking through Fern Valley, with ancient ferns, it was easy to imagine dinosaurs lurking around the corners. We were told this was where Jurassic Park was filmed.
After California, on our route north, we stopped in Portland for a fun day. Our last destination was the most Northwestern campsite on our trip – right outside of Olympic National Park. Our list for this National Park – hiking up to vistas into Canada (which turned out to be too cloudy), hiking through rainforests, and soaking in hot springs. This park is really beautiful — my daughter gets to use her favorite word frequently on this trip! Next stop – a slow journey east.