Point Reyes National Seashore Part II

Sculptured Beach BW
Sculptured Beach BW
Sculptured Beach
Sculptured Beach

We were only in Point Reyes for a few days and it was difficult to decide what to do. I was very impressed with how many trail and possibilities for backcountry and day-hiking the park had to offer. Shirin, Liz, and I did a good day-hike starting at the Laguna Trailhead. From there we followed the Coast Trail to Sculptured Beach (see map here). The hike was about 4 km one way and we timed our arrival to Sculptured Beach at low-tide. Sculptured Beach usually has good tidepools, but we did not luck out with the tides. We could still see some great mussel beds. I created two albums of this day-trip, one black and white album and one color-album.

Point Reyes National Seashore

Point Reyes National Seashore
Point Reyes National Seashore

North of San Francisco and along Highway 1 are some of the most beautiful areas in the US. The drive on Highway 1, sometimes called the Pacific Coast Highway, is spectacular. The road winds along dramatic cliffs, passing through lovely small towns and beach areas.  Liz, Shirin, and I took this trip in early November with Point Reyes National Seashore as our destination. Point Reyes National Seashore is part of the National Park system and occupies much of the Point Reyes Peninsula, which is geologically separated from the main land by the rift zone of the San Andreas Fault. The park offers great trails for hiking, fantastic views, and is a great place to wind down and relax. I created a black and white album from our trip to the lighthouse .

San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge

Panorama view of San Francisco
Panorama view of San Francisco

The location by the water, the hillsides, the streetcars, the people, and the laidback feeling of San Francisco makes it one of the most intriguing and attractive cities in the US. I enjoy hiking around the city with the occasional stop at a cafe, bar, or a gastropub such as the Monks Kettle, before stopping at one of the many really good restaurants. Also, the city now has a new aquarium at the California Acadademy of Sciences that alone is worth the trip to the city. I have collected some pictures from San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge from May 2009.

Garrapata State Park, California

Garrapata State Park, California
Garrapata State Park, California

In Monterrey County in California is the charming town of Carmel-by-the-Sea. Going south on Highway 1 towards Big Sur is the Garrapata State Park.  This is a small park that offers the best of the Big Sur region including some steep ascends to the peaks of the Santa Lucia Mountains that offers views of the Pacific. Liz and I followed the Rocky Ridge, Soberanes Canyon Trails, which gain 1200 feet of elevation. The hike is medium hard but well worth the effort. As you move away from the road you enter a nice secluded forest with a little stream, but soon the path takes you higher into areas of wildflowers, before you start to gain elevation and you are stunned by the views of the Pacific and the rolling green hills. Pictures are posted here.

State Parks along California State Route 1

Garrapata State ParkTraveling South from San Francisco we followed California State Route 1 along the coastline. The route is beautiful as it follows the jagged cliffs and the green rolling hills along the coastline. Scattered along the road there are a myriad of small and larger State Parks, and all of these parks have unbelivable hikes and beautiful scenery. Liz and I went hiking in Garrapata State Park and climbed to one of the taller peaks in the area, which gave us a wondeful view of the coastline. We hiked the area during May at a time when tons of wildflowers were blooming. We also explored several other State Parks in the area and pictures are found here.

Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo and San Juan Bautista, California

San Juan Bautista
San Juan Bautista

The arrival of non-native Americans to California introduced Christianity and missions to the native Americans back in the eighteenth century. The spaniards built a chain of 21 missions along the southern coast of California. Many of these missions have been restored and you can visit them. Liz and I went to two of these missions; San Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo built in 1770 and San Juan Bautista built in 1797. Some pictures from this trip are found here.

Sequoia National Park, California

One of my favorite things about the US is its national parks. I am currently reading the new book by Duncan Dayton and Ken Burns “THE NATIONAL PARKS: AMERICA’S BEST IDEA Companion Book” which accompanies their TV series.

Sequoia National Park
Sequoia National Park

This book gives a picture of the politics and personal devotion involved in the creation of these national parks. After reading the book I will definitely be more aware that these parks may not always be there for us to use unless we do more to protect them. Last May, I visited Sequoia National Park which was unbelieveably beautiful. The park had everything I wanted to see including fantastic sequoias, high altitude peaks, brown bears, and peace and quiet. Visiting the park in May meant that there were still patches of snow at the Wuksachi Lodge at 7000 feet. A day-hike to Panther Peak summit took me to 9000 feet and part of the hike was through snow. The view from Panther Peak was spectacular and well worth the strenuous altitude ascent. Some pictures are posted here.

SoHo, New York and Los Gatos, California

Redwoods tree in Los Gatos
Redwood trees in Los Gatos, California

Today I posted some pictures that I took in New York in the SoHo (south of Houston Street, wikipedia) neighborhood. The pictures were taken on February 1st 2009 together with Jordi. For a full day, we walked through the neighborhood in search of the greatest collection of cast-iron architecture in the world (link). Another set of pictures from our day in SoHo has been posted earlier (link).

In October ’09,  Liz and I went for a trip to Los Gatos in California and we had a chance to go into a giant redwood forest. The trees are unbelievable beautiful and impressive (link).

Saint Louis, Missouri and Alcatraz Island, California

This is my first post for many, many months. Since I last posted on my website a lot has happened in my life. I moved from New Jersey to Norway for the summer of 2009, spent the autumn in Washington, DC together with Liz, and went back to Bergen, Norway after Christmas. Liz and I are currently living in Bergen.

During this last year I have also made many more trips and now I can catch up on posting pictures from them. I am starting today with some pictures from an autumn trip to San Francisco when I had the opportunity to visit the prison on Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay (link). I will post more photographs from San Francisco very soon.

Liz and I also made a trip to Saint Louis in November that was great. Saint Louis is architecturally one of the most impressive towns I have ever been to in the US. I found the architecture of both downtown and the suburbs such as University City ( wikipedia) to be stunning and you can see a few pictures here (link).

I will try to post frequently in the coming months, both new pictures and also to create some new pages that will contain some of my current python development projects.