California Trailer Trip

August - September 2017
A 32-day adventure by Dewit Family Travels Read more
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  • 2countries
  • 32days
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  • 4.0kkilometers
  • Day 1

    Olympic National Park Here We Come!

    August 2, 2017 in Canada ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

    Catching the BlackBall Ferry to Port Angeles and then driving to our campsite on the ocean at Kalaloch Campground.

    Just leaving the inner harbour. Not quite the usual view with all the smoke in the air! Hopefully there are clearer skies ahead.Read more

  • Day 2

    Kalaloch Campground

    August 3, 2017 in the United States ⋅ 🌫 17 °C

    After a busy, but successful first day of travel yesterday, today is going to be a lazy beach day here on the ocean. I had planned for us to go into the Hoh Rainforest area to do a bit of hiking, however, it will cost us almost $100 CA to do so. We learned that already yesterday when we were going to visit the hot mineral pools at Sol Duc. This area is very much like Long Beach so don't really feel like spending that much although I'm sure it's very beautiful.

    The kids have been fantastic. Yesterday, we did a grocery shop together in Port Angeles. They all picked out some of their favourite snack and drink items. Everyone helped carry the groceries back to the trailer and then load them into the coolers and trailer. On arrival at the campsite, they all willingly pitched in to help setup camp.

    The kids all played Gubs while I read Al Gores new book, which I got from Laura. Dinner was also a team effort with Jaden doing a beef and veggies stirfry, Aaron setting up the table and Emma boiling the rice.

    The day ended with a walk to the beach to watch the sunset through the smoky horizon and we all played hearts before heading to bed.
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  • Day 4


    August 5, 2017 in the United States ⋅ ☀️ 19 °C

    Today was planned to be a surf day, but the kids weren't too excited about the idea so instead we took a short trip into Astoria, near to our campground.

    Our first stop was Fort Clatsop, built by Lewis and Clark during their expedition across America to the Pacific. We went into the visitor centre to view the displays and watch an historical film on the Lewis and Clark expedition, walked down to see the fort and then followed a trail to the location where Lewis and Clark landed their canoes after crossing the Columbia river.

    Following this we drove into the City Center to see the shops and grab a bite to eat. After lunch we drove to a spot high above the city where the Astoria Column is located. It was built in the 1920's and has a spiral staircase inside leading to the top of the eight story structure where their is a viewing platform. Beautiful panoramic view of the city, the Columbia River and surrounding area.

    On the drive back to the campground we stopped in at a Costco to pick up some provisions. Now it's time to relax and maybe go a load of laundry.
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  • Day 6

    The Oregon Dunes

    August 7, 2017 in the United States ⋅ ☁️ 14 °C

    Yesterday's drive down from Astoria took us about five hours. It was slow going on the 101 with numerous small towns en route. However, it was also very scenic and traffic was quite light overall so it was an enjoyable drive.

    I'm sitting outside our trailer having coffee while entering this trip update. The kids enjoy sleeping in and I'm fine with that. Gives me a bit of time to wake slowly, enjoy my coffee and just relax before my exercise session. I've managed most days so far to either go for a 30 min run or a bike ride before the kids get up and before breakfast.

    Today, we are scheduled to rent 250cc ATV's and ride the Dunes. I'll let you know how that goes later today. I've got FIDO until about 4 pm and then only very limited WIFI.

    So, we got out with the ATV's and roamed the Dunes. It was a perfect day for it with no winds to create sand storms and a very comfortable temperature. It took the first half hour to get the hang of it and how now to get stuck, but with the help of other, very friendly and experienced ATV'ers we learned. We had a lot of fun and only Emma got thrown off her ATV. She took a turn a bit too quick. Soft landing and she was good to keep going.
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  • Day 8

    Long Road Trip to Manchester

    August 9, 2017 in the United States ⋅ 🌙 16 °C

    Quite the drive today. Left early because I knew it would be a long drive. Had no idea though that it would have a narrow, winding 22 mile stretch with endless hairpin turns. We stopped for breaks but it took from 9:30 - 7:00 to get from Crescent City to Manchester CA.

    Very scenic drive though. We took a drive through the Redwoods and stopped for a short walk to one of the largest trees named The Big Tree. The drive from Leggett to the coast was crazy. But very beautiful. Setting was much like Jurassic Park. The coastal stretch south to Manchester was also very scenic.

    I thought that the area would be more populated but Manchester has a population of only about 400. The beach is about mile from the KOA. It has no amenities. So no surfing for the kids today.

    Tomorrow it should be an easy drive to Petaluma just north of San Francisco where we will pick Laura up at the airport!
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  • Day 10

    San Francisco Here We Come!

    August 11, 2017 in the United States ⋅ ☀️ 15 °C

    Have really enjoyed our stay at the KOA here in Manchester. Went for a long walk to the remote beach in the morning and spent the rest of the day relaxing in the campground, doing our laundry, playing ping pong, pool and pinball with the kids, ice cream social and Karaoke last night with a large communal fire, ate BBQ'd ribs, boiled potatoes and super salad for dinner and ended the day eating peanuts in the shell around our own 🔥.Read more

  • Day 13

    Our Stay in Petaluma

    August 14, 2017 in the United States ⋅ 🌙 16 °C

    Today Laura arrived at the San Francisco airport. We drove together to a viewpoint above the city. However, the view was not to be. All we could see was fog. From there we drove to Golden Gate Park and did a long, relaxing walking tour through much of it. Then we drove down to Union Square and walked the many streets around the square to visit the stores. Found several good deals at Macy's. We ended our time in the city at Lori's Diner. I loved the 50's decor including a Ford Edsel in the restaurant, but the food wasn't the best. I ordered pizza but the order got lost and it was an hour before I got served.

    On Laura's second day, we took a boat to tour Alcatraz. On arrival, we headed up to the former prisoner's dining hall for a presentation by a former guard at the prison with lots of interesting stories to tell about his experiences with the inmates. Following the presentation we did a self guided walking tour of the cell block and other areas of the prison and also watched an historical video on Alcatraz. Once we were back on the mainland we walked over to Pier 39 and then to Ghiradelli Square for a chocolate treat. We planned to take a cable car ride but changed our minds when we learned that the wait time was at least an hour. Instead we walked up the hill to The Crooked Street at Lombardi.

    Petaluma is a very old city with lots of history and a great downtown so we spent our final day here. First stop was a large outlet mall not far from the campground. The kids all found some clothing or footwear to bring home for school this fall. Next we drove to downtown Petaluma and did a walking tour of the area. Lots of great shops and restaurants. Laura bought herself a vintage dress in a shop called Chickaboom. We then drove out to Petaluma Adobe State Park where an old Adobe building is located which was once the home for workers on a huge 66,000 acre ranch. After touring the museum we were able to walk through the building and see the various rooms.
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  • Day 15


    August 16, 2017 in the United States ⋅ ☀️ 27 °C

    Arrived at our campsite about 25 miles from the entrance to Yosemite National Park in time for dinner yesterday. It was about 4 hrs of driving but we also stopped en route at Cunningham Skate park so that Aaron could skate in the largest skatepark in California.

    Today we caught a YART bus from the KOA to the Visitor Centre in Yosemite. Although only about 25 miles it took close to 1 1/2 hrs to get there. After viewing the exhibits and a short video we went on a short hike to the base of Lower Yosemite Falls for lunch.

    From there we hopped on a park shuttle and got off at the trailhead to Mirror Lake. We hiked up there and then back to catch another park shuttle to El Capitan. We stayed on the bus but were able to see the huge rock face.

    We ended our visit with a drink and snack before boarding the bus back to the KOA.
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  • Day 18

    Back to the Coast

    August 19, 2017 in the United States ⋅ ☁️ 18 °C

    Two days ago we were supposed to be heading into Sequioa Park for two nights. While stopping for lunch in Visalia, CA I noticed a road restriction on a section of the road within the park that we needed to use in order to reach our campground. No vehicles longer than 22' were allowed to use that stretch of road. The only other access route would have meant a very long drive along another narrow, winding road.

    So, instead we chose to camp at a couple of different places on the route to our next destination, Malibu. First stop was was Castaic Lake, just off the I-5 North of LA. The town has a nice beach on a man made lake. We walked there just before dark. Our campground was a bit noisy but was very clean and an enjoyable place to stay.

    Our next stop was Ventura, on the coast and only about an hour away. On arrival we had a few hours to spend before we could check in at the campground so we visited a shopping Center. The kids all found a few items for the fall. We did a grocery shop at Target, also in the mall, and then drove a short distance to check in at the campground. More a luxury, RV park with big rigs and paved sites throughout but convenient for us.

    Soon after setting up, we all headed into town. The boys went on their own. We did a long walking tour through the quaint downtown area with its many shops and restaurants, then down to the waterfront and onto the longest wooded pier in California and all along the beach to Surfers Point back to the RV Park.

    After dinner we rented four cruiser bikes and pedalled along the promenade and bike path back into town and the beaches. Aaron skated. Those cruisers look great, but they are heavy and with no gears were no easy pedal where there was a head wind or a an uphill stretch. We all got a good workout. Jaden got an even better one when he pulled his brother on his skateboard!
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  • Day 21

    Magical Malibu

    August 22, 2017 in the United States ⋅ ☀️ 24 °C

    We arrived in Malibu on Saturday from Ventura. We didn't have much time to explore the area after our arrival but we did follow a trail leading from our campground down to the ocean beach and went for a swim before dinner. After dinner we played some ping pong in the games room.

    Sunday we drove the short distance into Santa Monica. We started with a nice walk along the amazing sandy beach to the famous pier. From there up the hill to the shopping promenade where the kids bought a few more items of clothing. We had an excellent lunch at The Crepe Cafe located in the heart of the action along the promenade. After a little more shopping we walked back to our truck and got into our swim gear. The sand and sea were incredible! Huge area of nothing but fine sand. The water was very warm. We then returned to the campground to make dinner.

    Monday we drove to Six Flags Magic Mountain Amusement Park. Huge area with 16 roller coasters alone! Longest ride in NA, highest loop and all sorts of claims to fame. Not for me, but the rest of the family sure loved them. I was happy with The Scrambler and The Justice League where I got to ride a flying vehicle and shoot a laser gun at The Joker and other evil villains threatening to destroy Metropolis.

    Today was our last day in Malibu. We drove down to Venice Beach to experience the boardwalk and spend a relaxing time on the beach. You hear a lot about Venice Beach and we weren't disappointed. All kinds of eclectic people and shops on the boardwalk and another beautiful California beach.
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