After coming back from burning man in early September, the plan was to pick up our new off-road camper van (Sportsmobile) and head out again (for real) on our trip. The plan was pushed back when we found out our van wasn’t going to be ready until the end of September. So we moved in with our great friend Sanjay in the mission to wait it out. We took many weekday trips around the bay area during the week (Bolinas, Santa Cruz, Point Reyes) and had reoccurring “going away” parties back in SF on the weekends (it’s my last night guys!).
We couldn’t complain as there are so many beautiful things to see right in the backyard of SF and we love nothing more than spending time with our friends.
Some Northern CA highlights:
Bolinas – What an odd little surf/hippie town. There is little in the way of places to eat, etc. in this town, but that is surely the way the locals want to keep it. Bolinas is a great place to be based for access to both surfing and hiking. Be sure to check out the tide pools at Agate Beach if you go.
Point Reyes – Can’t say enough about the hikes here. The Alamere Falls hike, as well as our combo bike ride/hike to Arch Rock were some of the best day hikes we’ve done. If you live in the bay area and haven’t been, put both hikes on your list.
Going away parties in SF – A huge thanks to Sanjay for organizing our “official” going away party, as well as Nick Fogle for the toast to our goodbye. Many fun “going away” events followed in our extended stay, and we even got to see opening day at Levi Stadium. Thanks to all who joined us!
The Sportsmobile on pick up day in Fresno:
As we got closer to the end of September, we got the great news that our new home – the Sportsmobile (SMB) was ready for pick up on 9/26, right before our friends’ wedding in Vegas. We met up with Jonathan and Brian at Sportsmobile, and spent all day learning about our new home from top to bottom. Sportsmobile also customized a few late additions on the spot for us. They really have been great to work with.
Off to Vegas in the Sportsmobile:
Immediately after picking up our Sportsmobile (name TBA) we headed straight to Vegas for the wedding! Big congrats to Eli and Twee! We had a blast at their wedding and it was a perfect way to break in our “rig” and also get an idea of how tall the van is (9’6″). When we valeted the van, the parking attendant gave us a lot of props (way more than the sports cars waiting in line).
After the wedding, we wanted to take the Sportsmobile back to SF and show everyone, but on the way back from Vegas we had to go to the Ford dealer in Fresno to get some work done. This meant we only had one day in SF to quickly gather our stuff stored in our friends basement (huge thanks Dow and Haley! See you at Christmas!) and head out on our first scheduled adventure – Thousand Island Lake near Yosemite. Really to sorry to those who we didn’t get to see with the van (friends, coworkers, etc.) – we were very rushed.
99% of everything we own is currently now in our Sportsmobile, and I can’t even describe how hard it was to get to this state. I’ll do a post describing our essential gear in the future.
Thousand Island Lake, CA:
After loading up the SMB (literally throwing everything inside as quickly as possible) we drove 6 hours to the Thousand Island Lake trail head, arriving at 2am. By 6am we were up, packing our trail packs and heading out on our 3 day hike. This would be one of the most incredible places we have ever camped, and also one of at the most challenging hikes we have done to date (you hike over a huge mountain pass with heavy packs at 10,000′ elevation). It was also our first backcountry camping / hiking experience. Thank you Tim, Lawrence, Emily, Ben, and Tom for showing us the ropes! We highly recommend an overnight here to all you hikers/campers. It’s a magical place where the John Muir and Pacific Crest trails meet. You can also check it out in the documentary Mile… Mile & a Half. Also some great trout fishing, if you can get your gear up to the 10,000 foot elevation.
Thanks to everyone who helped us get to this point in our trip, and get on the road, especially Jenine’s Mom, Sanjay, Dow, and Haley. Next, our first true experience camping and off-roading in our new home in one of the meccas of off-roading, Death Valley. Post coming soon…
What we were listening to: Tumbleweed Wanderers – Freedom Town