Just after Thanksgiving the family Groshong invited us up to The Sea Ranch for a few days of R and R. Located on the coats between Bodega Bay and Mendocino, it’s quite a drive for those of us whose lunch prefers to sit quietly, but so very worth it. Christ, it’s pretty up there.
Rains made the fungi come out in the most brilliant colors and it was all I could do not to eat them.
Stuck to another local bounty instead, Groshongs elder and younger having harvested a pot of mussels for us all.
Winter beaches definitely get a slice of my heart.
Franklin tried his hand at pole-fishing and was oddly unsuccessful considering the name of the activity.
The resident sea lions seemed to fare better, looking extremely well fed as they lolled about.
Beach combing turned up some amazing colors.
Scrambled down a muddy hill to a driftwood heaven of future shelves and tilandsia holders.
Tide-pooled around, collecting sea urchin shells and poking anemones.
Noticed something red in one of the pools and kind of freaked out when we realized it was a gigantic octopus. Never seen one in the wild and it was this incredibly bright and vivid reddish-orange, pulling itself along from one pool to another against the current and over a waterfall. Pretty damn cool.
In fact, if the steamed mussels, home-made Manhattans, Skip-Bo and late night Trivial Pursuit didn’t do it already, I’d say that octopus made the drive all worth while.
To the seashore? While The Sea Ranch is home to many a resident (in some amazing 60′s modern timber-frame houses, which it’s worth noting, spawned their own phrase “Sea Ranch Style”) there are also rental properties available, as well as a restaurant and lodge. While we lucked out with a couch-crashing invite, it definitely seemed like a good place for a weekend or so, with state parks all around and it’s own stretch of beaches to explore, not to mention that most rentals have a hot tub….