While son Stephen and family were away from their home for a trip with Meagan’s family to Seattle, Dave and Jan decided to spend a few days camping in their tent trailer. The original thought was to head for the eastern Sierras, but the winter’s unusually heavy snow pack made that impractical. Heading south to Cuyamaca State Park, east of San Diego, was under consideration until weather forecasts predicted near 100 degree temperatures in the area. So cool weather predictions for the Monterey Bay area sounded like a winner – especially because Dave’s three sisters and their families live in the area. Dave’s hope to land a campsite at the Veterans’ Memorial Park (known as Deer Flats when he was growing up in the area) at the top of the Peninsula was realized with a very nice site.
Just a couple hundred feet from the camp site is Huckelberry Hill nature preserve with miles of trails to enjoy – across the fence from the Monterey Presidio military facility. The hike to the top of the hill was aided by a series of 185 steps (by the count of park authorities) – good heart strengthening exercise.
Views of the city of Monterey and the bay from the top of the Peninsula were quite spectacular.
And there were even wild huckelberries to be picked and sampled along the trail!
Tuesday included a fun bowling outing arranged and paid for by Dave’s sister Jan. We have no pictures to show because Dave and Jan’s camera stayed in the car, but sister Jan is an excellent photographer, and she was taking pictures of the group (Dave and Jan, sister Jan with grandchildren Conner, Cameron, Azela and Jaze and brother-in-law Steve, sister Susan and her son Jared, his wife Joy, and their son Daniel). Back at the house where Dave grew up in Seaside we enjoyed a visit with the family and his sister Susan provided a meal featuring enchiladas and blackberry pie!
Wednesday’s activities included an enjoyable hike and visit with Dave’s sister Jewel, her husband Rick, and their granddaughter Alexandra – from the Seaside beach to New Monterey’s Cannery Row along the bike and pedestrian trail which extends from Pacific Grove to north of Marina along very scenic coastal views. Jewel, Rick, Alexandra and Jan posed at one of the bay views atop the famous Fisherman’s Wharf in Monterey Bay.On Wednesday evening family members enjoyed a dinner meal at Seaside’s Googie Grill where Dave (joined by Jan this time around) enjoyed his second plate of the Danish dish “Frickedeler” (meat balls and gravy, mashed potatoes, cooked cabbage, a small serving of cranberry sauce, and plenty of french bread) – a tasty specialty at the grill.
Thursday began the drive home with an overnight stop at the county campground at Santa Margarita Lake. It was a very enjoyable, quiet, scenic stay in a campground nearly empty and apparently not very known well – but well-worth another visit.
The trip was a very enjoyable camping experience – both in Monterey and at Santa Margarita Lake – and we always enjoy the times we spend with family members who live in the Monterey area where Dave grew up. But it is always nice, following such a trip, to return home – this time to enjoy again the transformation which recently took place when carpet was removed and hard wood floors resurfaced in our living and dining room areas.
Dave and Jan are grateful to the Lord for the blessings of life and health and strength in their retirement years, with the freedom and resources to enjoy camping and family experiences like the recent short camping outing.