Sunday, April 24, 2011

Bodega Bay

We left Vacaville in the sunshine but, by the time we got Sonoma, about an hour from the coast, just north of San Francisco, it had clouded over.

Pictured is the winding mountain pass we took to get to the coast.

We stopped at Sonoma to walk around the town square with all of it's quaint shops and restaurants before having lunch at a Portugese restaurant.

Pictured are: the square at Sonoma, another wierd plant for Rhelda to name, and Janice deciding on a Pulled Pork Sandwich.

By 2:00 we were in Bodega Bay at the Bodega Bay RV Park. We had been here thirteen years ago and it really charmed us - me in particular. It’s a fishing village set inside a well protected harbour, but just over the dunes is the wild Pacific Ocean.

On that first visit to the town there was a very nice building for sale on the waterfront, in the harbour. The building sits on concrete pilings and had been used as a yacht club, as it is again now. I guess the yacht club was in trouble at the time because the building was vacant and it was for sale for $240,000.00. I couldn’t believe the value in the property and I dreamt of it being an ideal gallery/restaurant enterprise. It stuck with me for quite a while, even months later back in Canada. Had I been an Amercian I'm pretty confident we would have purchased it, taking our lives in another whole direction.

Pictured is the yacht club building we could have 'stolen' back in 1998.

I reasoned that Bodega Bay’s proximity to San Francisco and, in particular, Santa Rosa, just a half hour away, made it an ideal property to lure tourists and weekenders to. Today Bodega Bay is just as I imagined it would be, a thriving tourist destination with several large seafood restaurants neighbouring the yacht club building. Any property on the waterfront, especially in the commercial section where the yacht club is, is priced well into the millions of dollars.

We took a walk along the harbour and it started to drizzle rain. Fog horns indicated more of the same. We borrowed a couple of movies from the clubhouse and hunkered down in the rain.

When we woke on Easter Morning it was still raining and foggy. We decided to take a drive to Santa Rosa. As soon as we got on the road though the skies cleared and a bracing wind picked up. There are three different routes from Bodega Bay to Santa Rosa and we chose to drive up the coast about five miles to Highway 116 and then took the winding highway to town.

Pictured are a couple of shots of the coast just north of Bodega Bay and another of the Salmon River on the way to Santa Rosa.

Santa Rosa has an old and quaint downtown but the Wal-Mart didn’t have a food store so we had to shop at Safeway. Yes Bill, it’s quite a bit more expensive there.

We were back in Bodega Bay by 1:00 and stopped for lunch at the Lucas Wharf Restaurant and Fish Market. Our corner seats, pictured below, where we had a fried fish platter, left us looking out at the yacht club building mentioned earlier.

Pictured is Janice at tht Lucas Wharf Restaurant and, another shot of the yacht club building from the other side.

After lunch we drove up the coast a couple of miles from our RV park to take some more pictures. The spectacle of the ocean vistas was made even more photogenic by the profusuion of wildflowers.

Pictured is another shot from the coast near Bodega Bay.

Duncan’s Landing, pictured below, provided a path all the way around.

Bodega Bay itself is pictured below.

Back at the RV park we took a walk towards the sound of the ocean and came across a Bell Tower, which is a tribute to a seven-year-old boy from Bodega Bay killed by highway robbers while touring Italy with his family in 1994. I remember seeing a piece about the boy and his family on 60 Minutes back then because his parents donated his organs to save the lives of seven memebrs of Italian families.

Pictured is the Bell Tower behind the RV park as well as a couple of huge Eucalyptus Trees - the leaves smell like cough syrup.

Later we did laundry while our Easter Dinner of Turkey Legs and little red potatoes cooked in the oven. I made Caesar Salad and we had a nice bottle of wine.

Today we're headed further up the coast on Highway 1...


  1. Hi you two, the budget must be all right as you still seem to be eating well. The "weird plant" looks like a cactus to me, probably a prickly pear about to bloom or just through blooming. Yes Janice the other beach plants look like portulaca to me. Rainy and wet again today.

  2. It is not rainy in Kamloops. I just washed the car! Your photography remains captivating. I'm sure many will want to repeat your routings, all or partial. I agree with cuz Rhelda, I thought "Oh there's portulaca." I remember the coastal variety had larger blooms than our domestic.
    Keep safe and happy. hugs, cuz ljc