Friday, July 27, 2012

Tales Of The Basin

Friday: (07/27) Crasin muffins for breakfast. Ernie and I finished building the ramp for Wolfie. All that remains is to install the ramp surface, which will be some left over roll roofing material and to paint it, both tasks for Ernie. We all finished packing the RV to leave. Chicken and artichoke rice salad for lunch. We were off around 2pm. After a stop at the store for marshmallows we continued through Saratoga up Highway 9 and up and over the hill then down the other side to Highway 236 into Big Basin Redwoods State Park. Big Basin Redwoods SP was created in 1902 and is the "Oldest" California State Park, but NOT the "First" California State Park? The first California State park was Yosemite State Park (created in 1864) before it then became Yosemite National Park. Yellowstone National Park wasn't created until 1872 and Yosemite became a National Park as well in 1890. So even though Big Basin wasn't the first, it got it's creation date on the State Park Ranger patches.

Highway 9 had a very narrow construction zone at Sanborn Road where there was a channel with concrete barriers on both sides a few inches from the sides of the RV. No problem getting through there. Highway 236 is a single lane road most of the way into the park form the North, the way we came in. No problem getting through there either.

We were the first to arrive at the Tales Of The Basin weekend,sponsored by the South Bay Story Tellers. We camp in the Gazos Creek Picnic Area, an old campground that was turned into the picnic area. It's reserved for the story teller group camping for the event. Usually we have to move a barricade to get in to the campground for the Storytelling And Listening weekend. This year, the road was open and the area was filled with people. It was supposed to be empty. There are only a couple of sites big enough for our RV and they were filled so we looked for a place to hang out until and if we could get a better spot.

Offending Tree Root That Damaged RV Offending Tree Root That Damaged RV
After walking a narrow loop to check it out to see if we could get through I drove through the loop trying to find a parking spot to wait until the picnickers left. All didn't go well this time. I was almost out of the loop when I heard a horrible cracking sound.

Offending Tree Root That Damaged RV
I managed to locate a tree root at the side of the road going around a turn and ripped up the right  wheel well. Some pretty good damage but nothing that can't be fixed and we can still drive it. This was the first time I've hit anything in the nine years we've had this RV and we've been in many tight spots. The root, on the other hand, sustained almost unnoticeable damage.  Hamburgers for dinner.

RV Damage RV Damage
The RV is sort of like driving an egg shell.

Saturday: (07/28) Sausage and muffins for breakfast.

Banana Slug
About 1030 I took off on a hike. I took the Skyline To The Sea Trail to Berry Creek Falls Trail. I didn't go too far before seeing some nice banana slugs on the trail.

Big Basin Skyline To The Sea Trail Big Basin Skyline To The Sea Trail
The trail goes through a nice redwood forest.

Big Basin Skyline To The Sea Trail
The creek was flowing pretty good for this time of year.

Big Basin Berry Creek Falls Big Basin Silver Falls
Along the Berry Creek Falls Trail are three water falls, Berry Creek, Silver Falls, and then Golden Falls. There are also many cascades all the way up to top at the junction of the Sunset Trail, which I took back to camp. Nice nine plus mile hike though it got a bit warm later in the hike.

Big Basin Sunset Trail Big Basin Sunset Trail
I snacked on nuts, banana chips and a granola bar along the way. I was back about 3pm. Lou and Dawn had BBQ ribs and green beans for lunch and left a couple of ribs for me for a snack. Dawn was off helping with the Junior Ranger program. About 4pm we went down to the amphitheater for a couple of stories presented to the junior rangers. We returned to camp for a pot luck with the story tellers, listeners and rangers before returning to the evening campfire for more stories.

Sunday: (07/29) We started the morning with a little ride around the park. We drove out to look at the other campgrounds. They are soo crowded and we were alone in our campground except for one tent camper of the Story group. The other campgrounds were very full and crowded. We took Sky Meadow Road out to the end of the park then continued on Lodge Road coming back to Highway 236 and returning to camp. We'll be returning to hike  (me) and explore those areas of the park sometime later. I didn't know that these areas existed. I've hiked most of the rest of the park before.We enjoyed our peach blintzes and sausage for breakfast and then hooked up and left the park. We stopped in Boulder Creek to look at the town. There are a couple of interesting antique and junk shops there. We then headed South on Highway 9 to the Scott's Valley cutoff and took Highway 17 back over toward home. We stopped for a late lunch in Cupertino at the Country Inn Restaurant. Lou and Dawn shared a California omelet while I had a chili omelet. We then separated and they visited the thrift stores on the way home while I stopped for gas and returned home. It was rather nice in the park but here at home it is rather hot today.

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