We hopped back into Megan’s little red car and continued south on Highway One, past meadows of wildflowers dotted with cows, sheep, and horses, tall, rolling hills, tunnels of windswept cypresses, and always, the blue Pacific, its waves crashing against the rocky shore.
We drove through Point Arena, where we will hopefully be seeing more ballets and plays this winter, and as we approached the little campground at Anchor Bay, Megan suggested that we stop in and check it out. Every time we drive by it, we think of doing this, and today was the day!
It’s a charming little campground, with some permanent residents:
And other spaces for RVs and tents. There is a little store, showers, and even a fish/abalone cleaning station. The very helpful gentleman in the office told us that it has been there since 1925. He also let us go and look at the beach without paying for a day pass, and it turned out to the most beautiful beach in the county:
It looks like a southern California beach! Beaches here tend to be rocky rather than sandy. It was a delightful discovery and we will definitely go back.
Just down the road, we picked up Thai food at the ever-delicious Thai Kitchen, now with extra sparkle:
After stowing our dinners in the trunk, we picked up sandwiches and ate them at a little picnic table. Then we headed back north to Manchester State Beach.
Their website says dogs are allowed on leash, but when we got there, we discovered signs showing that they are not allowed at all. Being the only people there, we decided to ignore the signs and plead ignorance if a park ranger turned up and yelled at us.
We took a sandy path:
Past wild lupines and California poppies, to find the sea:
And a huge, unpopulated beach:
It is supposed to be four miles long, and I can believe it. Continuing our scofflaw ways, we let the dogs off their leashes, and it was a pleasure to watch them racing joyfully around the beach in the sunshine, their coats gleaming and ears flying. I love seeing them so happy.
We made our way back to the car through the tall wildflowers and headed home for Thai food and champagne. It was a perfect day, and the perfect way to spend my birthday.
A YEAR AGO: My little guy turned six.
FIVE YEARS AGO: A surprise trip to Willits!