"The world does not reward honesty and independence, it rewards obedience and service. It’s a world of concentrated power, and those who have power are not going to reward people who question that power."-Chomsky

"The trouble with self-delusion, either in a person or a society, is that reality doesn't care what anybody believes, or what story they put out. Reality doesn't "spin." Reality does not have a self-image problem. Reality does not yield its workings to self-esteem management." -J.H. Kunstler

"You don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows."-Dylan

Monday, June 30, 2008

6/30/08: Crescent City, CA

I got up quite early after getting so much sleep the night before, and proceeded to pack up before Eric and Marine awoke, so as not to delay the now daily late departure! I was quite refreshed after spending a full day to recover, and decided that if I could, I would use every Sunday as an 'off day' to just kick back and chill out. We'll see...

As we got closer to Oregon, I'm began to think I'd try to ride with these guys to Pelican Beach, then continue on into Oregon alone from there. Oregon's always been the focal point of the trip and it seems a shame to get there and only see it from the car. But, the further north we get, the colder it gets and I HATE the cold! In the end, I'll probably just stay with these guys to Portland if all works out.

We left the Elk Prairie Campground, without seeing any elk, and headed north again toward Crescent City. Eric wanted to stay one more night in the Redwoods so we decided to check out Mill Creek Campground; another State Park, but never actually went in. I had noticed on our handy little brochure that there was a "primitive" campsite listed near Crescent City called Nickel Creek. It looked like it was a short hike from the trail head to get to it, but it was also FREE and apparently isolated, which was no small thing after dealing with kids on a regular basis.

*Commentary Alert*

Parents: Harness your damn kids or leave them at home. Send them to summer camp... SOMETHING! People like to relax to peace & quiet when they camp rather than having the pleasure of hearing, "You suck! Nuh- Uh! YOU suck! You suck MORE!!" for an entire evening while they ride their damn bikes through their campsite! Why the HELL are you bringing BIKES to a campground anyhow? HIKE! And about that damn inflatable furniture you lug along... CAMPING... in that battleship you call a 'camper'... I digress...

*You are now leaving the Commentary Hazard Zone*

Along the way, I managed to finally get a cell signal and talked to Laina for the first time in a couple of days. We found the parking area and did the quick half- mile hike to Nickel Creek finding it COMPLETELY abandoned! YES!! We loved it instantly, although there was no water available, save Nickel Creek itself. I also discovered that I'd been reunited with an old pal: the Coastal Trail. Nickel Creek was just off the "Last Chance" section of the CCT. I had to laugh, and was staggered when I thought how long it would have taken me to get here taking just the trail!

I asked Eric if we could go into Crescent City, 7 miles up the road so I could get some real food, and the possibly charge my cell phone which was now completely dead. He obliged, and we wound up the Safeway from where I emerged proudly with 2 HUGE pork chops that were to be ecstatically cooked over a blazing fire we we'd make out of driftwood from the nearby beach. I never did get the cell phone charged however... that was getting annoying- trying to figure out why I never bought a car charger made it worse.

We headed back toward Nickel Creek after taking a quick look around Crescent City and finding the library which was CLOSED. Monday, of course! We also stopped at the little harbor and snooped around a bit.

When we returned to Nickel Creek, we loaded ourselves down like pack animals and headed down to set up. I immediately began the now familiar task of collecting firewood, which here included a HUGE log someone had tried to burn before. There were piles of driftwood already gathered at various places around the campground, so I consolidated these and began our pile.

We had neglected to get water in Crescent City, so it was finally time to use Friar Chris's MSR filter. I had no clue what I was doing, so thankfully it was pretty self- explanatory! We traipsed down to the creek, and proceed to gather about 5 liters of fresh, clean, cold, & CLEAR stream water. God, that tasted good in the fact that it had NO taste! Mmmmmmm.....

Then it was off to the beach to check it out. We had finally begun to get a little sun after almost NONE since I'd met up with them on Friday. The beach was very cool. Tidal pools, and the fresh water pool where Nickel Creek drained onto the beach. There was a memorial set up there as well; a tribute to someone. We hiked over the rocks all the way to the other end, enjoyed the vibe, then gathered more driftwood for the fire on the way back to camp.

With the fire going, I proceeded to cook the best piece of meat I've ever eaten! It was even better because I'd eaten nothing but cold food forever. I REALLY enjoyed that meal... both HUGE pieces!

The rest of the night was spent building and tending the fire, chatting, and enjoying the lack of children. I listened to some music, and slept like a baby in my tent on the thick grass.