Sunday, October 31, 2010

This Is Halloween

 We finally made it to Truckee, California! I have wanted to visit here for quite some time and having one of my closest friends living here now, it was the perfect excuse! Anna Goodman and her boyfriend Marco Sullivan have a beautiful house in Truckee and we were lucky enough to be able to visit when they were both home from busy lives on the White Circus (World Cup Ski Circuit). We planned it perfectly to visit for Halloween which is not only one of the best holidays, but also my birthday!! It was very special to spend it with Anna and Marco and their friends.

We all had jobs on a very hectic Hallow's Eve. Andrew was in charge of costumes and keeping the fire stoked

I was in charge of pumpkin carving!

Anna was in charge of baking for the Halloween potluck!

 Mad carving skillz

 Anna's delicious pumpkin scones

 Andrew working on the jet packs

Finished pumpkin snowman!

Jet-packs and helmets ready to go

 Finished product. Thanks to the NASA FIS team for the inspiration!

 Whole crew headed to "Tainted Love" a super rocking 80's cover band! What a great night of dancing and belting out the classics.
The night was perfect (except for marco having to miss out!) and I was content with my birthday already! But the actual day was almost better! It started out with a great breakfast at a local diner in downtown Truckee and ended up with an amazing cruise around Lake Tahoe thanks to Cramer and his killer orange boat!
Anna and Marco loving the sunny fall day!

 Marco getting ready to show his manlyness and jump in the lake! Crazy Alpiners.

Great form.... (maybe you should stick to speed)

The speedster. This thing RIPS!

 We stopped at the Fresh Ketch for a little afternoon dinner and I got a free sunday for my birthday! Wahoo!

 The cruise back to the boat launch was beautiful with the sun setting over the mountains and casting beautiful alpenglow over the eastern side of the lake.

 My pumpkin in all his glory

All in all it was a truly perfect way to spend my 24th birthday and a perfect first visit to the Tahoe area. Hopefully next time we will be here when we can shred some of the sweet powder I have heard so much about! Thank you to everyone who thought of me today and sent me birthday wishes. It will be sad to leave Anna, but exciting to watch her and Marco slay this season on the world cup circuit! 

Old Friends in New Places

Our adventure continued down the coast and we hit the massive city of San Fran. It was really overwhelming merging onto the freeway with cars ripping past us seemly twice as fast as kumu could go. Before we truly went into the city we took up the tourista route and biked across the Golden Gate Bridge! It was packed with tourists, but for good reason! Amazing views of the bay on an incredible fall day.

Cool shadows falling across the bridge

Our trusty steeds. Perfect for cruisin' anywhere and everywhere

We went over to Haight street to take in the history on hippydom. It was a bit overwhelming as all the steroetypes of hippys were thrust in your face, but there was some incredible artwork muraled over many of the streets in San Fran.

 More sweet artwork!

 After San Fran we headed to Palo Alto to see my old ski friend Jessica McNally. She toured us around the Stanford Campus which she graduated from in June as well as thier cool research grounds, Jaspar Ridge. 

Huge pommellos growing in Jess's yard! Along with figs, oranges and limes. 

Stanford Campus

 Cool cactus in the cactus garden at Stanford. I think I got smarter by osmosis

 After Palo Alto we started to head to Truckee to meet up with my old teammate Anna Goodman and her boyfriend Marco Sullivan and on the way we made a small detour to Napa Valley to try some wine and check out the vineyards!  It was a very beautiful valley and every winery called our name, but we only stopped at the Turnbull winery for some tasting and this winery that had a massive castle! 

 Our last stop was the cool Petrified Tree Forest. These massive redwoods were covered in ash after the eruption of Mt St Helena (different than st helens) and were preserved until they were found in the early 1900's. These trees are believed to be three MILLION years old. Hard to wrap your head around, but cool to try!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

California Dreamin'

We continued down the coast and headed into Oregon. One of our favorite places. It was actually on a road trip to Oregon two and a half years ago that Andrew and I had our first romantic moment. We retraced a few of our steps from the last trip and discovered a few new places. It was also a place I spent a couple of summers of my childhood with my parents. We had a lot of 'wow' moments which seem to happen almost daily on a trip of this kind!
Lunch spot on the Ocean.

 Cannon Beach. Home to the Goonies and our first official police encounter when they kicked us out of the parking lot for camping. They were kind enough to let us sleep till 6am so it wasn't all bad.

 Oswalt State Park. Or Smugglers Cove. We used to frequent this quaint little surfing spot as kids, and it is always a pleasure to come back to it even if they did close down the walk in campground.

 Close to the largest sea lion caves in the world, the ocean was packed with these huge barking mammals!

 We made it! The 'Promise Land'

 Morning Dew

 Being Zen in the Redwood Forest

 Does this make us official hippies? Either way... we drove through a freakin tree!!

 The biggest tree around. Literally. A circumference of 64 feet! You would need a few more people to give this tree the hug it deserved


 The hugeness of these trees was truly overwhelming. 

 Those are some big friggen roots

 BANANA slug... or to anyone on the ski team for the last year NANNNERRRR slug

Well the views keep astounding us everyday. And everyday brings something new. It is incredible to see what our world has to offer and we are not even a quarter of the way done our year long trek. Our time in the Redwood Forests gave both of us hope for the future and the resilience of our planet. If you are curious of our location check out the frequently updated map of our travels on the "Route" page

Monday, October 18, 2010

Feeling Very Olympic

It was a little hard to leave Canada and all our friends behind, however the pull of adventure and the open road was calling our names and it was time to move on. We headed south into the states and straight to the Olympic National Park just west of Washington. It has been a nice was to ease ourselves into the land of consumerism, and nice to remember that even our neighbors to the south have an appreciation of the wilderness. We spent a few great nights in the western rainforest and explored a few beaches which was just a taste of what is to come. The nights are still a little chilly and we are looking forward to getting south to the warmth!
Andrew gazing out to sea.

Exploring some of the huge deadwood scattered on the shores.

Yes, we did go to Forks and to LaPush... Jess and Alli, this picture for you and who ever else unfortunately got caught up in the frenzy that is "Twilight". It had taken over the town of Forks, thats for sure!

 The Washington Coast is scattered with amazing sea stacks and Tide pools

 Olympic National Park lays claim to some record breaking trees. This is a massive Cedar.

 Before hitting up the corrections center.

 Luckily they were able to cure me of my "olympicness"

Some of the beautiful forests in Olympic National Park. A pretty magical place

Our new headlights! Compliments of Russ and Andrew and a hard days work! Thanks a lot!!!