Archive for the ‘drives’ Category

Fall Colors at Goldeneye in the Anderson Valley
Friday, October 19th, 2007

If you’re driving on Highway 128 through the Anderson Valley on your way to or from Mendocino this weekend, plan on taking some time to stop at some of the many tasting rooms to enjoy the fall foliage in the vineyards. Bob Nye, Operations Manager at Goldeneye Winery, called me the other day to remind me about coming down to see the fall colors on the grapevines, so I made it down on Wednesday. Although the weather guys had predicted showers that day, it turned into a warm day with clouds racing through — perfect for walking through the vineyard. I’ve always admired the colors on the vine-covered hills, but this is the first time I’ve had the chance to walk through the middle of it.

Across Goldeneye Vineyard in the Anderson Valley

As you can see, the colors ranged from green to yellow to orange to deep red from one plant to the next, making for swaths of color below the hill. You can still find the occasional bunch of grapes that was missed in the picking. These were pinot noir grapes, and while the resulting pinot is excellent, they weren’t particularly tasty in the raw. I love the deep almost-indigo blue in contrast to the wild yellows and reds around the grapes.

Pinot noir grapes among the fall colors

The Goldeneye tasting room is a charming building nestled between several restored apple-drying sheds. They host group events on the patio outside, with its barbecue grill and Dutch oven and fabulous view. Out in the middle of the vineyard on a manicured path, they’ve placed a pavilion with picnic tables. What a spectacular place to enjoy a picnic or some cheese with a fine wine!Pavilion and Tasting Room at GoldeneyeWalking the rows of grapevines, in and out of the sun


Mendocino Outdoors is the premier guide to outdoor activities on the Mendocino Coast

Mendocino Outdoors, the premier guidebook for outdoor fun and adventure on the Mendocino Coast, was recently updated as an ebook for the 5th Edition. You can buy a copy at Smashwords.com, the Apple iBooks Bookstore, Amazon’s Kindle Books, and Barnes & Noble's online store.

Seal Pupping Season Begins at MacKerricher SP
Wednesday, April 18th, 2007

Harbor Seals on the rocksFrom now until the middle of May, visitors to MacKerricher State Park will find a barrier cable and signs east of the harbor seal rookery. Seals give birth on an open beach, and the newborn pups are extremely sensitive to intrusions — especially by dogs. It’s fine to observe the seals from the bluffs overlooking the beach, but don’t bring your dog. This is a great time to see the harbor seals. As the pups get a little older, you can watch the mothers coax the pups into the water for their first swimming lessons.

Coastal bluffs north of MacKerricher SPDuring pupping season, the males hang out elsewhere in the area. Last Sunday, we drove north along the coast north of MacKerricher and Ten Mile Beach. We stopped at the vista point at mile marker 74.09 on Highway One. This is a lovely spot with some wetlands areas on the headlands, leading down to the ocean. We saw a number of harbor seals down on the rocks, and we’re guessing they were males.

Peet the Monster Dog!This was also the driving trip where I discovered that Peet, my 9-month-old puppy, gets car sick. After he threw up twice in 25 miles, we headed back home — where Peet moped around the rest of the day. Gonna have to toughen that puppy up! 🙂


Mendocino Outdoors is the premier guide to outdoor activities on the Mendocino Coast

Mendocino Outdoors, the premier guidebook for outdoor fun and adventure on the Mendocino Coast, was recently updated as an ebook for the 5th Edition. You can buy a copy at Smashwords.com, the Apple iBooks Bookstore, Amazon’s Kindle Books, and Barnes & Noble's online store.

It’s Good to be Queen….
Monday, February 26th, 2007

Queenie‘s Roadhouse Cafe

Or so says Lynne (a.k.a Queenie), the owner and chef at Queenie’s Roadhouse Cafe in Elk. This is the best breakfast around, in my opinion — an opinion shared by a lot of locals. This is the place where you’ll see the most innkeepers outside their pens inns. As a recovering innkeeper, I have to say it’s wonderful when someone else fixes breakfast for you! Here’s what makes Queenie’s so consistently excellent:

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Mendocino Outdoors is the premier guide to outdoor activities on the Mendocino Coast

Mendocino Outdoors, the premier guidebook for outdoor fun and adventure on the Mendocino Coast, was recently updated as an ebook for the 5th Edition. You can buy a copy at Smashwords.com, the Apple iBooks Bookstore, Amazon’s Kindle Books, and Barnes & Noble's online store.

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