June 17, 2008 – Manchester, California - Crossing the Golden Gate Bridge is an experience you never forget once you have done it. The bridge, with its 7 lanes of engineering monument to art and physics and forethought, is a sight to see. The style is art deco, the paint, international orange, the height of the towers are 745 feet above the water and each year millions of cars, trucks, busses and even RV’s cross this visual landmark of San Francisco.
The Golden Gate Bridge was our entrance to the Costal Highway, which was our northbound route. This road travels along the shoreline from water level to 1,000 feet above all the way to Eureka, California. We wanted to see the changing coast and God’s hand and we saw and learned about both.
From soft sand beaches where you could walk for many hours to the hard rock cliffs of the coast, we traveled at an average speed of 25 miles an hour looking more to our left to see the spectacular views, the ocean etching its was inland. Rocks a few hundred yards as large as a good size office building were the guardians of the land mass being constantly pummeled by the ocean waves as the water crashed against their rock hard surface as has been the routine for thousands of years.
There are many farms along the coast, some produce dairy products, others are harvesting hay and some are growing communities of houses with names like The Sea Horse Ranch. Streets leading to and away from the ocean titled, Settler’s Cove, Timeless Drive, or the typical names of Ocean View and Storm Cove Street.
Each turn (and there were many) revealed another facet of beauty, the trees growing ever so stubbornly against the consistent wind that rarely quits coming off the ocean. The branches of the trees grow only on one side with the definable angle of the force of the wind the tree living becomes a living testimony to the environment that is as unforgiving as the knowledge there will be day, night, wind and fierce Pacific storms.
The trees root structure must be massive, clinging like super glue to whatever purchase of soil it can use to hold the barked structure secure.
Hawks soar silently on the wind looking down for prey, talons ready to seize an unaware ground creature. Sea gulls cry their piercing announcement of discontent staying out of reach of each other fighting for food left by the travelers through their territory, be that mankind or other morsels these scavengers of the ocean see as food.
Finally, after hours of turns, miles of incredible scenery, we arrive at Manchester and are ready to camp for the night, but not before setting up, eating quickly for there is an ice cream social from seven to seven-thirty and we must not miss that!
Sleep came quickly after a day of ocean scenery and the visual gifts from our Lord of His presence and presents to us in His design of nature.