San Francisco to Vancouver.
This is one of the most beautiful and seismically active trips in North America.
Indeed while driving north we were hearing news about tremors under Mount Hood and Mount Saint Helens.
This relaxed and enjoyable tour began in lively San Francisco. The Bay City, which came to life during the California Gold Rush, remains deservedly famous.
Two days is never enough, but as a gateway to the west, SF is a perfect start for a journey north to the Redwoods and the Oregon coast.
Crossing the Golden Gate Bridge, we visited Healdsburg, in California’s very POSH wine country. From vineyards to forests, the few remaining stands of Giant Redwoods are wonderfully accessible. Yet the mighty trees are really too large and too unreal to capture with a normal camera!
After overnighting in friendly Eureka, we continued north through forests and beached into southern Oregon.
One of my favourite states (for all sorts of reasons), Oregon is relaxed, cool and a little ‘hippie.’ Click here for several Oregon blogs.
From Grant’s Pass we spent a whole day exploring Crater Lake. The weather almost did not cooperate, yet gratefully cleared just in time for some magical photos!
Then comes the Oregon Coast. I like it best for the bird life and we even saw the spray from whales (and many rocks that looked somewhat like whales :).
Newport – halfway up the Oregon Coast – is the ‘Dungeness Crab Capital.’ We caught – and even ate – delicious crab. I love the Elizabeth Inn hotel where I always stay while on the coast.
Day two up the coast, the sun came out and we made the most of it, before crossing the small coastal mountains into Portland – Oregon’s Weird city. While not particularly attractive touristically, Portland is a wealthy lifestyle city as well as home to Intel, Adidas (and many outdoor apparel companies) and most importantly the greatest concentration of micro-breweries in the world!
From Portland the very best day out is a trip through the Columbia Gorge and up to Mount Hood with its summer-time skiing!
Leaving behind Oregon, we drove north toward Puget Sound and busy Seattle. Click here for Seattle’s Story.
And From Seattle we crossed north into Canada and Beautiful British Columbia. Once my home town, Vancouver remains one of the world’s great cities (not my words – rather those of the Human Development Index). The spring weather was good, and everyone was sad to leave.
This was an enjoyable journey with a lively and enthusiastic group. Please enjoy the links and watch out for those tsunamis on the west coast!