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Central California

 and the Sierra Nevada Mountains 

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My Surrey Border Films- Films I have made with other club members.

misc and one off films Destinations where there is not enough film to have a page to itself, or individual events etc.

About me

We flew into San Francisco airport in the evening, slept over in an airport hotel, and set off early the next morning for the coast, and turned south towards our first stop, Monterey. We stayed two nights in the Best Western, pricey, but central and pleasant, a great feature being the free wine and nibbles get together for guests in the late afternoon. We walked around the old cannery area, now shops and restaurants, and spent the evenings in the 'fisherman's wharf area. During the one whole day there we drove around the peninsular, visiting Pebble Beach Golf Club.

The next day we continued down the Pacific coast highway, great views, and the elephant seals were interesting, if lazy at this time of year.

Time to have an afternoon at Hearst Castle, amazing place. We've now done tour 1, an overview for first time visitors, but there are three others, more detailed. Next time out we would be happy to go again and see some more.
We turned inland, across to the mountains, a journey that took much less time than we had anticipated. We stayed at Three Rivers just outside Sequoia National Park, and spent all the next day soaking up the amazing trees. Much to my delight, I had a close encounter with a black bear - who was far more interested in extracting something to eat from a pine cone than he was in me, so I was able to film him for several minutes.
Yosemite National Park - we spent two days here, but when we got into the car, in bright sunshine, we heard a snow warning.  By the time we got to the mariposa Grove of sequoia trees, it was overcast and chilly, luckily we had fleeces in the car,  and at the 'tunnel view' entrance to Yosemite itself, it was snowing, and a lot of roads, including that to El Capitan, had been closed to cars without snow tyres. 
We drove out to our motel in Mariposa in mere rain, and the next morning it was bright and clear, so back we went. However the high roads were still snowbound, and we had to sit about in the main building until 2.00pm before we were told Tioga Pass was clear, we had accommodation prebooked on the other side, so had to cross. Glad we waited, the journey across pass was worth well worth the wait.
We stayed overnight in Mammoth Lakes, our worst motel by far, and not that thrilling a town, although to be fair, in October, it's neither ski time nor summer hiking. However, the journey up the 395 and then Monitor Pass was fantastic, and warranted a video all to itself.
Finally Lake Tahoe, where we stayed in Harrah's Casino, and at last had the chance to unpack. SPACE.....even his and hers bathrooms, each with their own TV. The Lake is truly picturesque.

2004 Gillian Gatland

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