Three day Carmel sojourn ends with a wimp of a hike, not a bang

The Adventurers needed to get back to the Peninsula today so that D could referee a water polo game in the afternoon. So, after an earlyish breakfast, they headed to a hike up the hill they’ve enjoyed on previous trips in the Mission Trail Nature Preserve.

When they’ve done it in the past, they’ve looped into town and then walk along the shoreline for awhile before coming back by Mission Ranch and the Mission itself.

Today they went all the way to the top where a gate marked “private property” and then retraced their steps before heading up to the surface streets that are adjacent to the Preserve. Lots of interesting architecture to take in and lots a great views both in the direction of the ocean and the hills.

The Mag got some decent off leash time, and got to meet other trail days. Always a mark of a good time…

Hike/easy to moderate climb uphill/2.45 miles

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Walk along the south part of 17-mile drive morphs into a forest meander

The Adventurers have a set of rules for their hiking excursions, all based on what they’ve learned over the years. Basic things like always have water, research the route as much as possible before hand, and, of course, making sure the trail is dog friendly.

They got the last one correct this morning when they headed from Carmel Beach north on what they assumed would be walkway adjacent to the 17-mile drive similar to the one that they walked on yesterday going south from Asilomar Beach.

They thought they’d let The Mag have a romp on the beach before going back to the car and getting waters for the 17-mile drive part of their morning but when they saw the stairs leading up from the beach, indicating this was the way to their destination they took it.

But unlike the more southern walking path, this is a trail that took them high up into the Del Monte forest and away from the beach, the expensive homes, and of course the pricey Pebble Beach golf course, who probably didn’t want folks walking adjacent to it unlike the public Monterrey Shores course near Asilomar.

It was a nice hike, just not what they expected, but they made the 4 miles round trip, got hydrated and drove ┬ásouth to Rocky Point where they can eat outside and look for whales and sea otters, even on a much cooler day than yesterday. The Cioppino is one of the best L has eaten. A lovely second anniversary lunch…

Hike/moderate/4 miles

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The D birthday takes the Adventurers south (not north)

The Adventurers had long planned to go to the fancy Airstream park near Guerneville to celebrate D’s birthday and their anniversary. But the North Bay fires got in their way.

When they had a chance to cancel five or so days ago, the situation was uncertain and it was clear the the smoke would be lingering.

So, they headed south to Carmel where they’ve been spending the New Year’s weekend for the past few years.

They hit a heat wave of sorts. Mid-80s along the 17 Mile drive which they chose to walk rather than drive, starting from Asilomar State Beach where the Mag went zoom, zoom, zoom.

Sometimes they got sea breezes. And sometimes it was just plan hot.

Mag cooled off in the water. And she drank a ton of water. Hope that doesn’t mean a lot of peeing come night time.

And by the way, that is not “the” lone cypress that D and the Mag are poising in front of. Just many of the cypress trees one finds along the way…

Walk/easy/4.25 miles

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Maggie goes to church on the “blessing of the animals” Sunday

As she did last year, Maggie accompanied the Adventurers to church this morning where the Feast of St. Francis was celebrated with the annual blessing of the animals. Well-behave dogs are on leash or in arms while more skittish creatures like cats and bunnies were in pet carriers.

And what good dog she was, sitting [mostly] quietly in the pew…

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Trying their best to be inCLUEsive

The Adventurers went to a party at friends Laurie and Jonathon’s home that was billed as “inCLUEsive” with the emphasis on Clue. The suggestion was to come as characters from the board game.

They hadn’t given it much thought until the day before when L remembered she had a peacock blue dressing gown that had once been Pris Graham’s who had been a mom to late husband Chris during his years at Western Reserve Academy. She’s converted it to a gown/gown and wore it once when the Adventurers went as Colonials to an India-themed party.

D channeled his costume from what he’d worn at a Muttville Senior Prom, thinking it resulted in a mash up of Col. Mustard and Professor Plum.

Good company, good evening…

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It’s the annual pilgrimage to Webb Ranch Pumpkin Patch, this time with a reptilian twist


Grace and James, accompanied by Gracie’s friend Emilie, came across the Bay today for their annual visit to the Webb Ranch Pumpkin Patch.

Son John and L figured Grace’s been going there since she was 11 months and James (thanks to old sister) since he was five months. L worried a bit this year if they’d be two old.

There are a lot of activities to choose from and lines are long, so the kiddos settled on things they’d never done before. One came in a big package – a ride on a horse. The other was much smaller, holding a snakes and lizards. The reptile zoo was new this year and a big hit, as was the hay slide.

After the newness, the worked off some steam in the jumpy house for older kids. Somethings never get old…

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Beginning of October sees the explosion of Halloween decorations

Halloween decorations have become a big deal in Menlo Park where the front yards are easily visible from the street. That makes walking around the neighborhoods extra fun.

They often get Maggie’s attention and often she’s not quite sure what to make of them.

Such was the case of dragon with flapping wings on North Lemon today. She went to sniff it but are quickly back. D picked her up for a better look…

Walk/easy/four miles

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