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On Thursday morning we went to Hearst Castle in San Simeon. The castle is up on top of a mountain over looking 9,000 acres and the ocean. It is now a state park but was once owned by Adolf Hearst. He was a huge news paper giant in the early 19th century. Quite a powerful figure who rubbed elbows with manny famous/interesting ppl. He let Zebra, Lamas, Elk, Moose, bears, and lions. He built his castle out of artifacts found in Spain, Italy, Greece, and Egypt. A very interesting property. Then it was several hours down the coast to LA. We drove around Sunset Blvd, saw Beverly Hills, the gates of the Playboy mansion (there wsa a mistake at the gate and we somehow didn't get out on the list to get in). Then ended the night with a comedy show at the Laugh Factory.
We were finally ready for Disneyland. After sleeping in for the first time during the last six days, we drove to the theme park and after about an hour of trying to park we finally made it inside. The lines weren't horrible so we got to see quite a bit. My favorite ride was Space Mountain and Kristi's Indiana Jones. After spending most of the day at the park we drove down to Huntington Beach the surf capital of the US. I was hoping to see some surfers but it was too late in the day when we got to the beach. The area was stunning with surf, sand, beach volley ball nets, and a nice walkable downtown with freindly locals. I could get used to a place like Huntington Beach. After that we drove up to Hollywood to see Kristi's cousin perform a hip-hop show at a club. The show was great, the drinks over priced, the club was ok but not our usual type of place to hang. We prefer our local taverns to a dress code club any day.
We're making our decent home up I-5. We did stop in Bakersfield at an animal shelter that Kristi works with in Seattle. This shelter gets many dogs and will sometimes drive up I-5 to other shelters dropping off dogs at select shelters along the way. It was nice for Kristi to see the shelter and appreciate what they do. Other than that lots of driving in flat desertlike conditions. More tomorrow if we do anything fun.
Drove down to Portland, OR then roughly 2hr to the Pacific. We trided to go to the Tilumuck Cheese factory only to discover it was closed do to a bursted pipe. So we headed south along HWY 101. The coastline was beautiful and the weather was wet. We stayed in Florence, about halfway down the state.
Went to the Sea Lion caves just north of Florence. We took an elevator 200 ft down to the caves where over 200 sea lions were lounging. This was one of the most beautiful natural things I've ever seen. From there south to the famous sand dunes where we rented an ATV and drove all over the dunes catching air on some jumps and almost flipping our ride. Finally stopping in Cresent City just into California. The weather turned into a thunder storm off the ocean and got pretty gnarly.
We drove most of the day. The roadway took us thru the Redwood National Park. Where we drove thru a cut out tree. The trees where huge, 22 ft in diameter. Only part of the drive was along the coast. The rest of the drive was hwy thru mts and wine country. Around the evening we entered San Fran where I proposed to Kristi with the golden gate bridge and the city in the background. She said yes. It was great. More tomorrow.