A friend of ours told us that if we planned to go down the coast we absolutely must see Ferndale, California. He said that it was this little town south of Eureka that was full of Victorian houses and buildings. We thought; "what the hell, we've got time." Having driven pretty much all over the United States (with the exception of the Northeast and by god I plan to get there as soon as possible) we had seen our share of Victorian houses but he insisted that we must see the "old" houses. In the West nothing is really that old. A hundred years is old to them. I guess it is all relative. If you are born and raised in the western states old is anything between 1870 to 1920. The further east you go old can be any time before 1870.
Anyway we decided to take the little detour off Highway 101 to see the "old" houses. Notice the lack of "old" house photos. We weren't really impressed. It was sort of touristy and to tell you the truth we see Victorian houses every time we drive to our friend's house in Galveston. What really caught our eye was their cemetery. Most of you know what a freak I am for a cemetery and the older the better. This one was interesting because it was built/dug/arranged (not sure what to call it) on the side of a very steep slope. It was impressive.
This photo seriously does not do it justice. It was a terraced masterpiece. JR and I wandered about taking photos, reading headstones, weeping inside for the tiniest of them and learning what we could about the cemetery. Turns out that this 5 acre piece of land was considered un-buildable back in the day so whoever owned it gave it to the town for a cemetery. Now days this would be considered prime real estate. The views of the valley below are extraordinary.
After leaving the cemetery we could have back tracked to the highway or we could take this little loop road, emphasis on little. We chose the loop road. Instead of taking 35 minutes to get back to Hwy 101 it took 3 1/2 hours. Turns out the little loop road is mostly one lane that goes to the top of the mountains (instead of a through pass) down to about the sea then back through the mountains again. Worth every minute!!!
Even the part where we had to cross a one lane bridge in the little town of Honeydew, where the locals seem to think that this is some sort of sport. It seems that in the evenings they entertain themselves by sitting on the sides of the bridge drinking beer and watching vehicles cross the bridge. We were surprised by the number of cars and trucks that actually cross this bridge so maybe there is something worth watching. The whole thing had a sort of "Deliverance" feel to it. Still, worth it!
We finally made it back to the highway and headed further south. We crossed back over the mountains, again, that run along the California coast to Highway 1 and ran right into this:
Still, worth it!
After an over night, lots of stops for photos and food we eventually we got to here:
Next stop Reno, Nevada.