Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Burney Falls

It seems unfair to post this right after Hidden Falls, because there is no comparison between these two. The falls were called "the Eighth Wonder of the World" by Theodore Roosevelt. I was worried that I might be underwhelmed seeing them in person after viewing pictures online, but it was breath taking. I only wish the water came from a hot spring, instead the water is a very chilly 40-something degrees. We will leave our swimsuits home, thank you.

I dare you to take a drink from this water fountain.

Someone was getting a little tuckered out. We continued the short hike around the falls and made our way back to the campsite.

Can you see the deer???
I promise, it's there.

How about now?

Love the spring in Luke's step, even going uphill.

Car camping at its finest-roller suitcase.

The boys woke up earlier than the ladies, so they headed back to the waterfall for more pictures.

Luke started off excited...

After the 100th pic, his face began to reflect more of, "Are you kidding me?"

This one and….

this one are my favorites.

Enjoying breakfast, which may have included bananas and s'mores before hitting the road.

Saw "Big Roy" on our way to Lassen Volcanic National Park.

Pulled over at a lake to grill our delicious hot dogs and feed ignore the wildlife in the park.

Lassen Volcanic National Park

We watched a 20 minute video that gave the history of the park. Luke found it really interesting. He was disappointed when the volcanoes didn't make any smoke while we were there.

 Preschool starts next week for Luke and I think our "up and go" will be more limited. It's been fun to squeeze in these trips and explore around us.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Hidden Falls

Saturday Evening we packed a picnic and headed 30 minutes away to Hidden Falls hiking trail. Our timing was good in that most people were packing out so we could take up more than our fair share of the trail. Bryan and I love being outside and decided we would like to force similar feelings in our children by starting them out young. So far, so good.

Playing dare devils with their dad.

Our fearless leader.

Blurry selfie-the best kind for me.
Emma LOVES this backpack.

Luke is becoming a California boy. Do you see those flip flops? They are his absolute favorite. Another perk about living here is that he'll be able to wear them most of the year…if they last that long.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Muir Woods

After we hiked out of Point Reyes and reached our car we decided to keep the good times rolling. Muir Woods was roughly 45 minutes away so we fired up the GPS and headed down California State Highway 1---I think it is one of the most curvy/motion sickness inducing roads I've driven. It is gorgeous. It follows along, I mean it follows the EDGE, of the California Coast. I thought I was being a cautious driver, but when Bryan flinched, desperately grabbed the door and exclaimed, "You're making me nervous!" on one of the sharper turns, I realized I wasn't being as cautious as I thought! It was hilarious and he still gives me a hard time, which really makes me laugh-I was channeling my inner Nascar driver.

Side note-we drove through Stinson Beach. It was an adorable beach town. I would love to go back and check it out on another trip.

We arrived at Muir Woods along with thousands of our closest friends. To say it was busy, would be a serious understatement. We lucked out and scored a great parking spot (after a slight "discussion" with another driver). We unloaded the kids and made our way to the entrance.

It was odd to me, but it felt like we had to keep the kids quiet. There were so many people, but it was so quiet that we were definitely the attention getters. 

We didn't linger too long, but it was impressive. 

The kids thought the big trees were "neat," but after seeing 10 big trees, they were over it.
I'm glad we stopped and loved seeing things I've never seen before.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Point Reyes

This tripped was planned for quite awhile (not exactly "the day of" kind of trip-especially with kids). Bryan did all of the research and made the arrangements. It was roughly a 2 mile hike into the campsite. No car camping here. We were backpacking in…with a double bob. :) Bryan read that there was a fire road that would be accommodating for our needs for the hike. We were prepared with everything from a first aid kit to a favorite stuffed animal. But, above all else, we set our expectations low.

Leading the way on the "fire road."

For Bryan, an ultra-light back packer, this was slightly humbling.

"Little" steep in a few spots.

Well, that fire road trail quickly became more and more narrow with deep ruts. Perfect for a double bob. 

I didn't take photos of the most technical parts of our hike, because 
1) I was worried I was going to be documenting a stroller flying down the mountain with my baby girl in it 
2) I thought the grandparents might consider "parental rights" for their grandkids. 
Everything turned out just fine, no run-away strollers. Just a lot of laughs---once it was over.

Emma didn't mind the bumpy ride, in fact, it lulled her right to sleep. 

I have to give credit to Luke. He did awesome on the hike and was often telling me to hurry up. To help slow him down,  I made him carry my pack. Not true, but I may have briefly considered it. He was a good hiker.

Arrived at Point Reyes.
It was chilly, but we weren't expecting tropical temperatures. The kids played frisbee, chased the ocean foam (and getting wet, of course), rolled down hills of sand, searched for sea shells, built sand castles and had a fantastic time exploring. It was beautiful. 

Lets see…where are the showers??? Oh right, 2+ miles back to civilization. Pass me a wet wipe, or 10.

We were having so much fun, that someone found it a little difficult to stop and pose for a picture.

All of the weight in the stroller from the wood was put towards an awesome bonfire on the beach. 

Our tent was close enough to the beach that we could hear the crashing waves. 
The kids slept great that night, once all body parts were inside the tent. They were worn out! 

The next morning, we explored the shoreline.

…and chased seagulls.

Later that morning we hiked out on the actual fire road. I'm still not sure what trail we were on beforehand. It was sooooo much easier, but not near the memory maker. This picture is brought to you by Luke. I think he's going to follow in Bryan's photography footsteps.

Luke hopped in the stroller on the hike out and fell asleep. I don't think he's slept in a stroller since he was 9 months old. The kids played, hiked and slept so well that it encouraged Bryan to start looking at another similar trip for our family to take. I have to admit, that I was skeptical, but it was such an amazing trip…that I'm actually on board for the next round.