Viewing entries tagged
photography

8 Comments

The Beauty of Highway 101 in Del Norte County

The beauty of Highway 101 in Del Norte County, California

There's something pretty magical about returning to a place you once lived, especially when that place is as beautiful as the north coast of California. Old haunts and favorite spots look similar, yet different. At night it's easy to get turned around when old landmarks are shuttered and replaced (or simply grown-over with shrubs and vines). In the light of day, however, it becomes clear that not much has changed at all.

Sunset along Highway 101, just south of Crescent City, California.

Sunset along Highway 101, just south of Crescent City, California.

Sunset along Highway 101, just south of Crescent City, California.

Sunset along Highway 101, just south of Crescent City, California.

Just before the holidays, I had another chance to head back to Del Norte County to visit with my family still living in the area. As you can see from these photos shot a few days apart – one day at sunset and another as the sun came over the hills – along a favorite stretch of Highway 101, the drive was spectacular. The weather was beautiful, the ocean was a deep turquoise and the trees stood as tall and commanding as ever. 

A foggy morning from the turnout at the bottom of Wilson Creek Grade between Crescent City and Klamath, California. 

A foggy morning from the turnout at the bottom of Wilson Creek Grade between Crescent City and Klamath, California. 

A foggy morning from just above Wilson Creek Grade between Crescent City and Klamath, California. 

A foggy morning from just above Wilson Creek Grade between Crescent City and Klamath, California. 

The moon setting over the Pacific along Highway 101 in Del Norte County. 

The moon setting over the Pacific along Highway 101 in Del Norte County. 

The bridge over Wilson Creek in Del Norte County.

The bridge over Wilson Creek in Del Norte County.

Every time I go back, it occurs to me that I may not have fully appreciated the area's natural beauty when I was younger. As a child, Crescent City and the surrounding area seemed safe. We walked to school and played until sundown without giving it much thought. As a teenager, the small town felt well-known and, yes, a bit claustrophobic. Nature was secondary to high school crushes and prepping for the big game. Moving from the area was inevitable as I chased a college education and various dreams but, in returning, I feel more capable than ever to truly understand just how special a place it is. 

When it comes to towns and cities, sometimes change is good. And sometimes — when referring to the (somewhat) untouched splendor of towering redwoods and salty seas — change is a dirty word. That said, roads crumble and fall into the sea and majestic old growth trees are threatened in the name of "progress" and "improvement." I hope the beauty of this place remains for generations to come, but I suppose nothing is certain.

In the spirit of seizing the day, I say go. Go now, go often and see everything you can. You won't regret it, my friends.



8 Comments

1 Comment

Friday Favorites + Weekly Wrap Up

attachment-51ff2715e4b02708b6bcb95b

Friday Favorites:

Wrap it Up:

  • Sometimes I get so caught up in documenting our adventures that I forget to just stop and experience life. I opted not to capture my recent visit to the GOOD: Street Food + Design Market here in Sacramento last weekend, but wrote about it anyway.

----- 

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend! 


Let's hang out: Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Bloglovin


1 Comment

15 Comments

My Mighty {fine} Life List

attachment-5188fba7e4b0921527f982bf

So, here's the deal: I make lists regularly. I love ticking boxes and putting lines through items I've accomplished. For some reason, however, I found it difficult to finish my Mighty {fine} Life List. Created by the amazing Maggie Mason of Mighty Girl, the lists (and the movement that surrounds them) are meant to capture 100 things you'd like to do before you go.

The premise behind the popular life lists is pretty great. You simply list out your goals - both big and small - and act upon them. The lists can change as we grow, which is key. Maybe an opportunity comes up that you could have never imagined... put it on the list and cross it off! Maybe you decide one of your goals is no longer as important as you once thought... remove it!

I started my own list years ago - long before I started blogging - and just let it sit unfinished. Well, not anymore! I finally took the time to write it all out and get it ready for public consumption. I feel like putting this out to the universe (well, at least to you lovely people who read this blog!) will help motivate me to really seek out new experiences and make sure they come to fruition.

Without further ado, I'd like to present:

My Mighty {fine} Life List

(Note: Accomplished items are in bold.)

  1. Visit all 50 states: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
  2. Take photos of iconic bridges in all 50 states
  3. Really understand the settings on my digital camera
  4. Run (and finish) a marathon
  5. Visit all 59 National Parks in the US: Acadia, American Samoa, Arches, Badlands, Big Bend, Biscayne, Black Canyon of the Gunnison, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Carlsbad Caverns, Channel Islands, Congaree, Crater Lake, Cuyahoga Valley, Death Valley, Denali, Dry Tortugas, Everglades, Gates of the Arctic, Glacier, Glacier Bay, Grand Canyon, Grand Teton, Great Basin, Great Sand Dunes, Great Smokey Mountains, Guadalupe Mountains, Haleakala, Hawaii Volcanoes, Hot Springs, Isle Royale, Joshua Tree, Katmai, Kenai Fjords, Kings Canyon, Kobuk Valley, Lake Clark, Lassen Volcanic, Mammoth Cave, Mesa Verde, Mount Rainier, North Cascades, Olympic, Petrified Forest, Pinnacles, Redwood, Rocky Mountain, Saguaro, Sequoia, Shenandoah, Theodore Roosevelt, Virgin Islands, Voyageurs, Wind Cave, Wrangell Saint Elias, Yellowstone, Yosemite, Zion
  6. Take singing lessons
  7. Get on stage and sing again (even if it’s just karaoke)
  8. Take snowboarding lessons
  9. Live in a state other than California
  10. Start practicing yoga
  11. Teach a class on any subject (or be a mentor)
  12. Meet the President of the United States (it doesn’t matter who it is at the time)
  13. Go to a concert and hang out with the band backstage
  14. Go ice fishing in Alaska
  15. Let go of the material things cluttering up my life
  16. Go snowshoeing
  17. Figure out what it takes to do voice-over work and do it
  18. Take an extended (months-long) trip to anywhere
  19. Go back to England to visit family and re-visit places important to my family history
  20. Write a book
  21. See a moose (in the wild)
  22. See a grizzly bear (also in the wild, preferably from far away!)
  23. Road trip through Canada
  24. Sing at a wedding
  25. Become a tour guide
  26. Create a photo book of all of my favorite bridges
  27. Make my health a priority
  28. Foster a puppy dog
  29. Hire a stylist to tell me – once and for all – what not to wear
  30. Join a book group
  31. Be an extra in a show/movie
  32. Attend a Beastie Boys concert (Keeping it on the list. You never know. RIP Adam Yauch)
  33. Go to a grown-up summer camp like this one
  34. Travel somewhere beautiful by train
  35. Spend an entire day reading a good book on a tropical beach (without feeling guilty…like I should be doing something)
  36. “Pay it forward” at the coffee shop by paying for a stranger’s morning fix
  37. Experience the Aurora Borealis
  38. Go back to D.C. to re-visit the monuments/museums/etc.
  39. Write an article/story for a large print publication
  40. Learn more about creating and editing beautiful videos
  41. Visit Greece
  42. Visit Croatia
  43. Go glamping in the Swiss Alps
  44. Create a road trip around the world's largest everything (see unfinished Pinterest board here). Take said road trip.
  45. Eat baklava in Turkey
  46. Spend a week in a rental house with my best friends in Cape Cod
  47. Own an Airstream (and maybe live out of it for a bit)
  48. Join a CSA
  49. Take a backpacking trip
  50. Start painting again
  51. Skinny dip
  52. Travel through the Amazon rain forest
  53. Attend an awards show (preferably the Grammys)
  54. Go to Australia
  55. Visit New York City
  56. Learn another language
  57. Take a European road trip
  58. Take a Northern California road trip to experience the super cool things I usually just drive right past
  59. Sleep in a tree house or lookout station
  60. Spend hours wandering the High Line
  61. Take a Chicago girls trip
  62. Remove all of the grass from our property and replace it with a more sustainable ground cover
  63. Go geoducking
  64. Cook through an entire cookbook
  65. Find a reason to go to Antarctica
  66. Be present when my nephews experience something incredible in nature
  67. Re-vamp my print shop business model to better showcase my photography work
  68. Star gaze in the middle of nowhere with my husband
  69. Tour the White House
  70. Take a soak in the Blue Lagoon in Iceland
  71. Go hot air ballooning
  72. See Machu Picchu
  73. Change out all of the boring doorknobs in my house and replace them with beautiful ones
  74. Travel on a private plane
  75. Experience Germany’s Oktoberfest at least once
  76. Take a bicycle trip through Holland (tulip fields + windmills, please!)
  77. Attend Camp Mighty
  78. Cook lobster at home
  79. Take a road trip to see the fall colors
  80. Attend Sundance Film Festival
  81. Go sailing
  82. Be brave enough to cut my hair super short
  83. Take a helicopter ride
  84. Visit the San Juan Islands
  85. Go canoeing/kayaking somewhere beautiful
  86. Be an artist in residence in a national park (like this)
  87. Successfully grow fruit trees in our backyard
  88. Live outside of the U.S., at least for a short while
  89. Renew our wedding vows
  90. Travel to Easter Island
  91. Have dinner (and dessert, of course) with Nigella Lawson
  92. Visit Crazy Horse and Mount Rushmore
  93. Learn to can fruits and vegetables
  94. Go hunting with my husband
  95. Visit the Bonneville Salt Flats during Speed Week
  96. Photograph a ghost town at sunset
  97. Make pasta from scratch
  98. Feel the mist from Niagara Falls on my face
  99. Go to the top of the Eiffel Tower
  100. Take a photo trip to the Galápagos Islands

-------

Anyone else have a life list they want to share? Feel free to link up in the comment section. I'd love to see how your lists are shaping up!

15 Comments

4 Comments

North Coast Road Trip: Taking the Time

I'm back this week after another trip to visit family in Crescent City, California. You may remember a few photo-heavy posts (here, here and here) about the lovely little town in which I used to live.This time around I decided to mix work and play by taking the time to really appreciate the already long drive. I stopped often to capture fun places to explore along Highway 101 (which I hope to share eventually), had to take a detour along a road I've never traveled and spent some much-needed time with family.

-------

If you're heading from the Sacramento area to the north coast, I recommend taking I-5 to Highway 20 to Highway 101. That was my plan, but was turned back due to an accident that closed Highway 20. The nice Caltrans worker suggested I take CA 175 to get to Highway 101 instead. The road is pretty dicey in places and goes up (then down) a very steep grade, but the views made the detour totally worth the extra effort:

attachment-5188fba7e4b0921527f982a4

Taking the time to stop at some of the beautiful areas along the way was also well worth it. I'm sad to say that I usually just cruise on by, too preoccupied with getting to where I'm going. I hope to stop more often in the future. Here's why:

attachment-5188fba7e4b0921527f982aa
attachment-5188fba7e4b0921527f982b3
attachment-5188fba7e4b0921527f982ad
attachment-5188fba7e4b0921527f982b9
attachment-5188fba7e4b0921527f982a1

I spent some time tooling around Crescent City visiting tourist sites I haven't paid much attention to in years past. Here's a view of Battery Point Lighthouse from Crescent City's harbor (mermaid included):

attachment-5188fba7e4b0921527f982a7

On the driest day (it seems we only get one or two whenever we visit), we decided to head to the nearest trail head in the Redwood National and State Park system to spend a few hours appreciating both old growth...

attachment-5188fba7e4b0921527f982b0

...and new growth:

attachment-5188fba7e4b0921527f982b6

Beautiful, right?

-------

I look forward to sharing more about the places I know and love in the coming months. So many Californians haven't experienced much of the north coast and I'm hoping to inspire at least a few people to keep on trucking once they get through wine country. I promise it's worth the drive.

What about you? Any north coast adventures you'd care to share? Let's chat about them in the comment section, shall we?

4 Comments

1 Comment

California Coast + Goethe + Happy Links

attachment-5188fba7e4b0921527f9829e

{"As soon as you trust yourself, you will know how to live." // Johann Wolfgang von Goethe}

Happy Links:

  • I can't get enough of these wildflower photos from Annabelle Mintz. We have our own wildflowers blooming here in the Sacramento Valley and they're absolutely beautiful.
  • Meredith and Michael from Map & Menu blogged about their recent experience as puppy foster parents. I've always thought about fostering a dog, but I'm not sure I'd be able to give him/her up after the foster period ended! This post has me thinking, though...
  • I'm always looking for new music and Kinfolk Magazine's latest playlist post is just what I needed.

Wrap it Up:

  • It should be clear to you by now that I love my home state of California. Just in case, I thought I'd hammer that point home this week with a photo essay of some of my favorite spots.
  • The Tower Bridge in Sacramento finally made it into my "Build a Bridge" series this week. I see that bridge almost everyday and I thought it was high time I showed it a little blog love.

------

I hope you all have a fantastic weekend!

1 Comment