Places in California, and things with R

So, I’m finally continuing the series “My A to Z of California”. My goal is to post 25 (leaving out X) posts about all my favorite things and places in California.

Rain

is always a topic to discuss. Usually there’s not enough. First and foremost, California has been in a drought since the day we moved here. I remember Governor Schwarzenegger saying, that people shouldn’t flush the toilet when they go go pee at night. If it’s yellow, let it mellow. If it’s brown, flush it down. 

But last winter California got lots of rain. Loads! It felt awesome. There were actually some days where the air had this special smell, after the rain just stopped. When you can smell the water evaporating because it can’t seep away in the ground fast enough.

And according to this article, California (at least NorCal) can expect more rain in the future.

Here’s why a UC Riverside climate researcher says to expect more rain in California

Ridgecrest

is a town in Kern County. It’s surrounded by four mountain ranges and being there feels like being in the middle of nowhere. Normally it wouldn’t be on my list of favorite places in California, but we were stuck in Ridgecrest for two nights in 2014. My girls and I were on our way to Death Valley , when the alternator of our VW Eurovan died. And it didn’t break down in Ridgecrest, but right after we left the area with cell phone connection.

As a consequence, we had to stay at the Econo Lodge in Ridgecrest. And at this point, I just wanted to make the most of this time for me and the girls. While waiting for our alternator to be replaced,  we walked to the movie theater,  to the Pizza place next door, got a pedicure and perused Walmart. Furthermore we met our friends that we were supposed to meet in Death Valley, at the Maturango Museum. Even though Ridgecrest won’t ever be one of the places in California that I recommend visiting, it has a special place in my heart. The time being stuck there was annoying on one hand, but unforgettable on the other hand. These are the kind of stories my girls might tell their grandchildren one day.

Here is my post Death Valley from 2014.

Places in California

Redwoods

There is the famous Redwood National Park in Humboldt County, but down here you can see some beautiful trees, too. A great place to go is Big Basin Redwood State Park. The short, beautiful Redwood Loop trail features the Mother and Father of the Forest and you get to see many other beautiful trees.

Muir Woods is a popular place to go, but you have to be there early, no actually even earlier in the morning. Or better, take the shuttle from  Mill Valley.

Which one is your favorite place to see Redwoods?

Rincon

Or Rincon Point is a great surfing spot South of Santa Barbara. It’s one of my husband’s favorite places to surf. We usually camp at the Carpinteria State Beach. You can book it through Reserve America.

Russian River

is a beautiful area in California’s wine region, just about an hour North of San Francisco. It is full of beautiful wineries, river adventures and much more. Read more about Russian River here.

Relay, Rock’n Rolls and more Running

As a matter of fact, I ran my first half marathon here in California, even though I’ve been always running in some way. First, I ran the Rock’n Roll San José 2010, followed by 4 more halfs over the last few years.

As a consequence, I joined the team “Running amuck” for the Golden Gate Relay (from Napa to Santa Cruz) in 2011. Twelve people share almost 200 miles of running in 24 hours. The race starts in Napa and ends North of Santa Cruz. Therefore, I had to run 3 legs, each between 5 and 6.5 miles. My second leg was at about 3 am in the morning  when it was pitch black with some occasional stars. It was fun, super hard and the experience of a lifetime.

The next post in this series “Q is for…” will be rather short!

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