Tag Archives: trips

Fort Bragg / Mendocino: 7/5/2009

Warning: inane content ahead.  It is a journal of what we did while on vacation.  It is not particularly well-written, and should you decide to read it, you will likely experience an overwhelming sense of boredom similar to watching someone else’s home videos.  Proceed with caution.

We headed up to the house in Mendocino, and on the way we stopped for dinner at Kelly’s grandma’s house.  We pulled in at 6:30pm, and it was still oppressively hot.  If memory serves correctly, it was still in the 102F range.  Nothing a little pizza from the local pizza parlor couldn’t fix, though.  For being such a rinky dink little hole in the wall, they sure make great pizzas.

After about an hour layover, we forged on to the coast.  Highway 20 between Willits and Fort Bragg is extremely windy.  I was trying not to make Kelly and Troy sick, so I was taking it easy around the corners.  We made it through with 0 barf-related incidents.

The house we stayed at was amazing.  We had a big room downstairs, with a nice window seat.  There was also a huge TV room and a bathroom that we had all to ourselves.

Upstairs, there was a large kitchen, a big family room with a fireplace, and a TV room with a huge TV.  The master bedroom and a third bedroom were also upstairs. 

It is a very nice house.  My words don’t even begin to do it justice.  You’ll just have to take a look for yourself:


So, thanks, Mom & Dad!  That was one bitchin’ beach house!

Park City, UT — Monday, July 31, 2006

Kelly and I decided it was time for a much-needed vacation, so we packed our bags and headed out to Park City, UT for some R&R.  This is a log of our activities.  It is more for my own sake so that when I'm old and senile, I can look back at what I did in my youth, but feel free to read on.

The last day.  *sigh*

Check out time was 10am, so we didn’t have much time.  We packed up, cleaned the condo, and then headed downtown for breakfast at The Eating Establishment.  I decided to forgo Eggs Benedict for a house specialty called the Spanish Dawn.  You can read all about it on their menu.  I was a little weary at first, but it was gooood.

After breakfast, we had some time to kill before heading to the airport.  On a tip from a local, we drove east out to Kamas and toured the countryside.  About 45 minutes into the drive, just past the town of Oakley, we saw a sign stating that we would run into I-80 if we stayed on the current road.  Not knowing how far away the junction might be, we stopped at a state park to inquire.  The nice, teenage girl had no clue.  Kelly later observed, quite astutely, that the girl had probably never been outside of Oakley in her entire life.  If true, how sad.

Well, that was it.  After our countryside tour, it was time to head home, so we dropped off the car and boarded a plane back to Sactown. 

I didn’t know what to expect on my first trip to Utah.  I had this vision of crazy pitchfork-carrying Mormons chasing us down the street because we’d had some wine with dinner.  However, we found the population of Park City to be comparatively diverse and accommodating. 

One common, recurring theme for the trip was how relaxing it was.  We were under no pressure.  We weren’t operating under any strict schedules.  No projects were due.  There were no crowds.  We did what we wanted to do, when we wanted to do it.  It was pure bliss.  I just hope that if and when we return to Park City, it meets all of our heightened expectations.

Park City, UT — Sunday, July 30, 2006 (backdated)

Kelly and I decided it was time for a much-needed vacation, so we packed our bags and headed out to Park City, UT for some R&R.  This is a log of our activities.  It is more for my own sake so that when I'm old and senile, I can look back at what I did in my youth, but feel free to read on.

We woke up at 8:30am to start the day.  The condo we’re staying at has a common clubhouse with wireless Internet access, so we took the laptop up there and plugged in for about 15 minutes.  I was going on three whole days without checking my email, so I just had to get it out of my system. 

We had originally planned on renting mountain bikes for the day and cruising around Park City, but we really wanted to do the ZipRider, so we headed over to Park City Mountain Resort

IMG_1845 PCMR is a great place to go in the summertime, especially if you have kids.  They have bounce houses, horse rides, and a human maze, but the best things are the rides.  The ZipRider is a ski lift that has been converted to allow you to strap yourself into a harness and ride down to the bottom of the hill.  It was excellent.  Afterward, I looked like the guy from the Maxell commercial, except my hair was blown straight up instead of back. 

IMG_1844 The second ride we went on was the Alpine Slide.  You sit on this little sled with a stick in it.  It’s kind of like luge, but you push forward on the stick to go faster and pull back to brake.  It was great.  It was like riding down a bobsled track.  I led the whole way down, but Kelly caught up to me on the flat stretch.  Damn you, gravity.

They were also installing an Alpine Coaster ride, which is exactly like it sounds – a roller coaster that starts at the top of the hill and winds it way down the slopes through the trees.  It looked pretty crazy.  The rails were narrow, the track was supported by thin aluminum tubing, and the corners all had safety nets installed.  Not exactly confidence inspiring, but it would have been fun to try.  Sadly for us, it won’t be open until sometime in August.

After a quick lunch at the bottom of the mountain, we headed back to the condo to recharge.

So the plan after lunch was to rent some mountain bikes and cruise the general area around our Condo.  That didn’t happen.  Both Kelly and I crashed out hard, and we didn’t end up leaving again until 3:45pm.  So, we decided to just drive into town and walk a few trails.

IMG_1852 We walked by the McPolin Farm, which was a pretty cool little historical site.  The bunkhouse was tiny, but apparently back in the day they had three workers sleeping in there.  The barn was massive, as were the adjacent concrete silos.  We peeked into the dairy shed, and it looks like a local 4-H club now uses it for meetings.  Kelly was very excited about this.  After about a 3.5 mile hike, we decided to head back.

It was about 5pm.  We had dinner reservations at 7:45pm, so we went to the clubhouse.  Kelly sat by the pool, and I sat in the lobby, getting caught up on all that I had missed while being unplugged for 2+ days.  It’s amazing how much you can miss in such a short amount of time.  My Yahoo email account had close to 1,000 SPAM messages.  Holy crap!

On to the dinner.  We ate at a place called the PRIME Steakhouse.  It’s one of those a la carte joints where you have to order everything separately, and the steak alone costs $30.  Lucky for us, there isn’t a lot of traffic in Park City during the summer, so the steakhouse was running a 2-for-1 promotion.  If we each ordered an entrée (didn’t have to be the same one, either), a drink, and a side, they would subtract the cost of the least expensive entrée from our bill.  What a deal!

To start off, we got appetizers.  Kelly got a bowl of Lobster and Crab Bisque soup, and I had a tomato & onion salad topped with bleu cheese.  Outstanding.  I’ve only ever had tomato & onion salad with vinegar and oil.  The bleu cheese took it to a whole different level.  Kelly’s soup was delicious, too.

For entrees, we both ordered the 8oz filet.  Oh man, was it good.  It was seasoned perfectly and cooked to specification, and they cooked it in such a way that the outside was a little crispy, while the inside was still tender and juicy.  As a side, we ordered the garlic mashed potatoes, and we both agreed that without reservation, these were the best garlic mashed potatoes we’ve ever had. 

IMG_1859 The whole atmosphere was just very relaxing.  The sun was setting, and the street and shop lights were starting to come alive.  The steakhouse had a live guitar singer/performer playing music the whole time, and they were all covers of songs that Kelly and I both knew well.  It’s hard to compare this with Mama’s Fish House, but in terms of overall experience, I would probably rate this as the best I have ever had.

After dinner, we strolled around the city for a bit, and then headed back to the condo to call it a night.

Park City, UT — Saturday, July 29, 2006 (backdated)

Kelly and I decided it was time for a much-needed vacation, so we packed our bags and headed out to Park City, UT for some R&R.  This is a log of our activities.  It is more for my own sake so that when I'm old and senile, I can look back at what I did in my youth, but feel free to read on.

IMG_1832 We woke up at 7:30am to go hiking.  By the time we got dressed and ate our breakfast*, it was about 9am.  We drove around and finally found the Lost Prospector Loop.  It’s a pretty flat trail that is used mostly by mountain bikers.  The views were nice, but other than that it was a pretty unspectacular trail. 

By the time we were finished, it was noon, and time to meet Kelly’s friend Mindy and her husband Troy for lunch in downtown Park City.  Kelly hadn’t seen Mindy in over 8 years, so it was a nice little reunion for them. 

Strangely, many of the restaurants downtown aren’t open for breakfast, and quite a few aren’t open for lunch, either.  We ended up sitting on an outdoor balcony of a pizzeria called the Red Banjo Pizza Parlour.  It is up on the second story and near the top of Main Street, so we had a great view of everything that was going on below us.  We sat out there for 4 hours just chatting away.  I had a great time getting to know them, and it seemed like Kelly and Mindy were able to pick up right where they left off.

IMG_1842 We had planned on hitting up the ZipRider that afternoon, but it was late, so we headed back to the condo to cleanup and get ready for the Big Bad Voodoo Daddy concert out at Deer Valley Resort

Man, we had great seats.  We were 6 rows up from the stage, just to the left.  Unfortunately, they didn’t allow flash photography, so I only got one grainy picture at the end, but it was sweet to sit that close and be able to see the expressions on the musicians’ faces as they played.  Plus, the Utah Symphony played behind them, too, giving them a very full sound. 

It was about 10pm after the concert, so we just went back to the condo and crashed.

* Total cereal blows ass.  I'm serious.  Toe jam is probably more palatable.

Park City, UT — Friday, July 28, 2006 (backdated)

Kelly and I decided it was time for a much-needed vacation, so we packed our bags and headed out to Park City, UT for some R&R.  This is a log of our activities.  It is more for my own sake so that when I'm old and senile, I can look back at what I did in my youth, but feel free to read on.

Flight departure time: 6:15am
Time we were supposed to wake up: 4:30am
Time we actually woke up: 5:00am

It's a good thing Darci was staying with us to drive us the 1/2 hour to the airport, or else we probably would have missed our flight!

Anyway, neither of us got much sleep the night before because we were up visiting with Darci and packing last minute items.  As soon as the wheels of the plane left the ground, I was out, and it seemed like we were on the ground in Salt Lake City ten minutes later.  Rumor has it that I am an open-mouthed sleeper.*

After we grabbed our bags and got the rental car, we headed up the road to Park City.  It’s not that far away.  It only took us 30 minutes to get up here.  SLC wasn’t much to look at, but Park City is a beautiful spot. 

We parked the car and walked through the old historic Main Street.  It’s a quaint little scene with all kinds of shops geared toward the enormous tourist population that flocks here during the winter.  During the summer, though, it’s nice.  Unlike anywhere in California, Park City is not crowded at all.  It’s such an ideal summer destination, partly because of its proximity to other locations, but also due to its lack of hordes.  It is so nice.  I can’t recall a time where we’ve been in a setting that is so relaxing.  This was a much-needed break, and I’m glad we picked Park City.

Free Image Hosting at allyoucanupload.com We ate lunch at this place called The No Name Saloon.  They had Buffalo Burgers on the menu, supposedly made out of real buffalo.  They could have used a little seasoning, and didn’t really taste that different compared to regular beef.  The garlic fries were excellent, though.  We also heard that this is a very popular watering hole.

After a couple of hours downtown, we headed out to the Jordanelle Reservoir.  We had planned on just driving around, but there were no crowds, and the weather was great, so we went to the marina and bought some bottled water and beach towels and hit the beach.  The water was a little chilly, but it felt nice to be lying there on the beach with nothing to do or worry about.

After the lake, we drove around a little community in a valley called Heber City.  It looks like it would be a nice place to live.  There are a lot of chalets and inns and resorts.  We stopped to look at real estate, just out of morbid curiosity.  The “cottage” we looked at was 4700 sq ft, and it was selling for $800k.  Unreal.  It was definitely meant to be a vacation house, the way it was set up.  It was pretty sweet.

IMG_1843 By this time, we were ready to check in.  We headed over to the Canyons Resort and got into our condo.  It’s a nice little 1-bed, 1-bath joint with a great view out onto a small meadow at the bottom of the mountains.  There were a couple of horses meandering through the valley.  It was kind of cool – they came up to the fence and let the little kids staying in our resort pet them.

Being that we’d been on the go since 5am, we were pretty tired, so we just went to the store and got some snacks.  For dinner, we had a nice, nutritious vat of 7-layer dip**.  Yum yum.  We keeled over from exhaustion pretty early, but all in all, it was a great day.

* Rumor also has it that I don't give a damn.
** aka Assrocket Compound #1357