Eureka turned out to be a rather cozy little town, so we spent the morning walking around town. It turns out that Eureka has a very artsy population and there are plenty of murals and posters for dance auditions around town. It also has a charming ‘Old Town’ where all the houses have been preserved and now houses various art shops and galleries (and for once not of the incredibly tacky variety that we’re used to), but most of them were closed as it was Sunday. After seeing a few seals in the harbor and being verbally molested by the Zoltar machine at the dock we head off down the coast again. We miss the exit to Ferndale however (which would have taken us out to the coast again) and are forced to drive the rather dull interstate.
After a while we come upon signs talking about ‘Avenue of the Giants‘ and we realize that we’re not quite yet out of redwood country. We pick up a guide leaflet at the first stop and find that they have eight ‘Points of Interest’ along the avenue and we stop at about five of them (did I say that I can’t get enough of redwoods?). We walk a few trails and learn some more things about redwoods in general. There is one trail that leads down to the nearby Eel River (which is all but dried up this time of year). I take off my shoes and walk around a bit in the stream that is rather warm, probably due to its shallowness. We spot a frog, a lot of larvae-thingies that I don’t know the name of but somehow recognize (they look a bit like ladybugs, in that stage before they actually become ladybugs you know?) and a funky-looking spider running around in the sand with signal-red hindquarters (we tried to get a picture but he was a bit fast and the phone’s LCD screen doesn’t like the bright daylight). At another of the stops we find very large Blackberry bushes (Björnbär) which we feast on, they’re amazingly sweet (and large) but the blazing sun has made a lot of them look like raisins. Even so there are plenty of ripe ones and we get quite a few scratches before we’re through.
Right after the Avenue of the Giants comes Redway, where our guide book had recommended a little restaurant. But, since it was still Sunday it too was closed, so we instead went to the nearby grocery store and got some random goodies out of the deli.
With lunch ingested we continued on down to Leggett where we could finally head out to the coast again on highway one. This stretch of highway one is called ‘The Lost Coast’ and is more or less just a long stretch of isolated coastline. Rather beautiful, but since we’ve just come from the Oregon coast it’s more of a ‘Yes, beautiful, but let’s listen to some music and drive’ instead. We did stop a few times to look at the view though. We also pass through a few small towns on the way, but nothing really catches our fancy and we end up spending the night in Fort Bragg.