Manchester Beach KOA

Thus ends our summer rally trip. We stayed one last night in the Olema RV park before heading home, but I’ve posted about Olema before, so I’ll just include it here.

IMG_6729From MacKerricker to Manchester, it was only 43 miles and Richard rode the whole way. Apparently, I took only 1 picture. Again, this was Highway 1 in all its glory, and on the side of the road closest to the edge. There were a couple of places where the road was very narrow and there was no guard rail going around the outside corners. I was really clutching the steering wheel at times, lest any sudden wind gust cause me to veer in any way. It’s all psychological of course. Given the same road with land on both sides, I’m fine. The key to this drive is to engage in silent conversation with any hapless travelers behind you. “Chill your jets back there. I promise I will pull over just as soon as there is a paved turnout that doesn’t make me hyperventilate. In the meantime, I am going to go as slow as I damn well need to, so you just relax and enjoy the view.” There may have been some more colorful words strewn about within that narrative, but this is the PG version. The stretch between Little River and Elk, and the so-called “rollercoaster” between Stewart’s Point and Jenner, seem to be the ones that stick out in my mind. It’s ok if you go slow and don’t have a fear of heights. I like guard rails.

Richard’s head cold slowly turned into my head cold over the last two days of the trip. We have mixed feelings over this. On the one hand, it was kind of a bummer of a way to end the vacation, but on the other hand, it may well have helped to stave off the post vacation blues because we really like our local Chinese restaurant for hot and sour soup when we’re not well. Also, we can be glad we weren’t sick during the rally. Oh right, and since this whole trip was our version of a do-over from our bicycle adventure, I was able to remind myself (frequently) that at least I didn’t have to bike eighty or so miles to our next tent site while sick.

IMG_6726Back to Manchester though. This is a really nice KOA, as those go. Yes, the sites are closer together than in many state parks, but ours did not feel cramped at all. There was a lovely pool, hot tub, and playground, none of which we were inclined to use, but I noted they were nice. Also the bathrooms were new looking and clean, and there’s the camp store. We drove over to Point Arena to see if we could get something for dinner we didn’t have to cook and found a cute little market with hot soup and chili. Perfect.

IMG_6738Our last leg of the journey took us back to the Olema RV park. We’ve stayed there before and have traveled that stretch of road enough for it to be somewhat familiar. On our way, we stopped at Wright’s Beach, just north of Bodega Bay. I noted some sites that looked like they would have pretty spectacular ocean views. There’s no cell service down there, but there is if you go back up to the highway. This will go on my list of places we should reserve some time. I’d want to make sure I got one of those sites though, because there are some along the entry road and upper loop that didn’t look nice at all.

IMG_6739Before you get to Olema, if you’re coming from the north, you get to have a nice long tour of Tomales Bay. I could see that being a fun place to do boating things and we’ve been bouncing around the idea of kayaks during this trip. Of course, mostly we bring it up at times when we’re glad not to be dealing with kayaks. Like when we’re sick. Or when it looks like there is a big storm on the horizon. But on this day, I will admit that it did look like something that could be fun. IMG_6742After I’d finished the drive and parked in the site, I pretty well konked out for a long nap. We had dinner in the restaurant that is walking distance from the park, and they had some of the best clam chowder I can remember having. Or maybe I was sick and super appreciative of any hot soup I didn’t have to cook. I’m pretty sure it was decent clam chowder though.

The next day was a slow pack up, fuzzy headed, coughing drive home. We warned our daughter that her two weeks of peace and quiet were coming to an end and she left us a message on the white board: “Alissa & Richard: I’ve been informed that you’re both sick and coughing a lot. Do not touch any of my possessions. Avoid using my doorknob unless absolutely necessary. Cover your mouth when you cough. Welcome home, by the way.”

Smart ass. No idea where she gets that.

Total miles to Manchester: 43.1, 15.6 mpg, 1 hour, 50 minutes. Site 42. Total miles to Olema: 102.9, 16.0 mpg, 3 hours, 54 minutes, site 147. They don’t let you make site specific reservations, but I asked for 145, 146, 147, or 148, and they accommodated that request. Those are nice because they’re at the end of the loop and private on one side, and by the “river”, which is a stagnant algae pool at the moment.

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