Friday, January 16, 2009

Point Reyes Lighthouse

Yesterday, we took a drive up Highway 1 along the California Coast to visit the Point Reyes Lighthouse. On the way, we stopped at Stinson Beach to bask in the sun and enjoy our lunch. I hate to admit it, but our lunch consisted of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, although, they WERE made with my own recipe for homemade mulitgrain bread. The lunch wasn't fancy, but I think anything would have tasted gourmet sitting on the beach watching the waves on January 15. Our unseasonably warm weather and Lou's lack of work due to the economic slump were the reasons for our little day trip. After our lunch and an unsuccessful search for seashells, we packed the car back up and headed north for Point Reyes Station. We took a short stroll through the quaint couple of blocks of the downtown and stopped in at Bovine Bakery for a coconut macaroon and an oversized chewy ginger cookie. I wondered, why is it that commercial bakeries always make their cookies so big? I guess they can charge a lot more that way. Anyway, we didn 't seem to mind as they were a perfect size for sharing. After dropping in at Cowgirl Creamery, we started the drive off of highway 1 in search of the Point Reyes Lighthouse. It was a long and meandering drive through historical ranches. Appopriately called the Pastoral Zone, our car weaved up the windy road that led us through cow pasture after cow pasture. There were happy cows everywhere, eating lush, green grass. We left the unusually warm January sun behind us and found ourselves in a thick, dense fog, more dense than any I'd seen in San Francisco. It was surely responsible for keeping the fields so thick with greens. When finally reaching the parking area for the lighthouse, we realized we'd vastly underdressed for the outing. The summerlike weather was miles away and we were bare-legged and sockless and standing in cold, blustery fog. After deciding we should finish the trek as we had come this far afterall, we scrounged around for extra clothes and started the half mile hike. It ended with 300 stairs down to the lighthouse. The light was well-kept and we received a personal tour from the park ranger on duty who was enthusiastic even at the end of his day. I thought he must rattle off the same details to tourist after tourist a few times every hour day after day. After our tour, we hiked back up the 300 stairs, walked the half mile back to our car, and drove a little over an hour back to San Francisco, where the sunny city seemed a world away from those foggy pastures.

The Point Reyes Lighthouse in the dense fog.

A break in the fog.

These two photos were taken from the very same spot within seconds of each other. The first is looking west down the steps to the lighthouse and the second was taken facing south.

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