Friday, December 15, 2017

Yosemite on my mind.

“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.” – Helen Keller

Spending the night in a tent cabin at Yosemite isn't the most daring adventure in the world but it's a lot of fun.  This fox needs hot chocolate, luckily there was plenty of dining options at the park. 
I read that they have a famous hotel here at Yosemite, called the Awanhee Hotel and it's pretty darn nice (and expensive).  However, it fits into my mission of seeing the great hotels.
I took a tour to learn more.

I can't believe I have the mural room all to myself. Where's room service? I could use a cup of hot chocolate. 
I am a sucker for a good mural and a forest scene to boot.  Right up my alley.
After the mural room I headed upstairs to wander around. 
The main hall was used as a hospital after WWII for recovering soldiers.  A the height of the recovery there were 900 hospital beds.  Of course, back in the day smoking was allowed in hospitals and with 900 soldiers recovering from service there was a lot of smoking going on and that being said some of the decor was damaged.  
Here is the great hall today.  Notice the rug on the wall?
The Awanhee Hotel has one of the largest Turkish rug collection in the world.  The builder of the hotel noticed the rugs being used a packing material for crates on San Francisco harbor.  There were lots and lots of rugs and they were cheap (my kind of guy) and so they bought them, used them in the Awanhee Hotel and the rest is history.

This room looks comfy.
A great hotel but it's time to explore the valley. 
Is that Half Dome or El Capitan?
Yosemite Falls is in full motion.  This year there was record rainfall in California so the falls are flowing strong. 
I decided to take a day trip to Glacier Point.  Nice view but the wildfires are restricting my view. Phooey.  
After a few minutes and a few miles on the trail the view opened up.  

After a few more miles on the trail I ended up at the base of Vernall Falls.  
All of these falls flow into the Merced River.  Interesting fact: Merced was a close contender for naming the dog, Sequoia.

Time to leave the valley. 
Waiting for the bus
The bus took me to Mariposa, California and dropped me off in front of a brewery.  My kind of bus line. 

Thursday, December 7, 2017

California, here I come!

"One day if I go to heaven... I'll look around and say 'It ain't bad. But it ain't San Francisco.'" — Herb Caen

Hello readers, welcome back to my travelogue/philosophical journey.  Last time I checked in with my blog audience I fell asleep in a comfy chair, had a dream to go to California, and well, here I am.

As you may or may not recall my journey to find myself started with an idea to see the great lodges of the Northwest.  I decided to expand my search to the great hotels.  Here's a pretty fancy place in San Francisco. I didn't stay here because it's a tad expensive but it's a cool place to check out. 

My hotel was pretty cool too.  It was built after the 1906 earthquake and fire and it's in great shape for being over 100 years old.  I am waiting patiently for the bellhop  to bring up my luggage. 
Huh, no mention of the stuffies making the 8th floor great.  I better have a chat with the manager. 
Boxed water?  Huh, only in California.  This coffee cup is the perfect size for me. 
Time to explore.  This plaque commemorates San Francisco's sister cities.  I got to tour the old church in the background too.  Not a bad place, they said "everyone's welcome" and as a fox in an urban city I appreciate that. 
No trip to San Francisco is complete without a walk down Chinatown.  Should I buy one of those crispy ducks hanging in the window of certain stores?
No duck but I did get Dim Sum.  It was such a nice day I decided toto walk down to the pier.
I look good against the background of San Francisco don't I?
I think this picture has the potential to be on the front of the blog.  Notice the big smile on my face.
On the way back to the hotel I headed through Ghiradelli Square.  
This place is awesome!
Next stop: Yosemite!!!!!!!

I started my journey at the Hetch Hetchy Reservoir in Yosemite.  It was a beautiful area that wasn't too crowded.
Of course there is a big dam making the reservoir and it's somewhat controversial.  It makes for a great lake and wonderful views. 
Let's do some hiking:   Where should I go?  
I didn't go to any of those places but I found a nice trail around the lake. 
Goodness, this fox is tired.  I need to find some lodging.  I hear Curry Village has lots of tent cabins.  It ain't the Ritz but it will do.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

When the beach calls, you have to accept the charges.

Begin at the beginning... and go on till you come to the end: then stop. ~Lewi Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

I had a great time at the mountains but now it's time for me to head to the beach.  I picked a great day.  That rock in the background is called Haystack Rock.  Enough talk, let's go to sand. 
As I was walking around the beach I noticed a building up ahead.  Could it be one of the great hotels of the Northwest?
It has potential. 
I better go inside.  Ok, it's about 80 degrees today at the beach and they have a fireplace going?  Strange but it adds ambience to the lobby.
The fireplace was warm but I need a more comfortable seat.    
These chairs were really comfy.  I fell asleep and had a dream to head South.  Look out California, here I come. 

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Thanks J and B!

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

A letter came in the mail a few days ago addressed to the human, however I noticed the signature Jerry and Ben drawing and knew the package was for us. 
Do you see the picture of two bears waving? 
Speaking of J and B I always look for the little drawing on their package, just to make sure it's an authentic Jerry and Ben picture versus a imitation Jerry and Ben letter. 

The gang sent this cool card outlining all of the hot dishes that certain parts of Minnesota are known for.  Let's see, near J and B's summer home that city is known for Green Bean Casserole.  Their winter home doesn't have a dish but the casserole nearest that town is something called Corny Burger Bake.  One of my roommates wants to go International Falls someday and they are known for Wild Rice Casserole. 

A quick Google search indicates lots of recipes for each casserole mentioned (even Corny Burger Bake).
Quite a wealth of knowledge in this postcard.

Besides the cool postcard J and B sent a Starbucks gift card.  Thanks guys. Drunk Fox and I will share the gift.

Friday, November 17, 2017

Journey of a Little Fox part 2

"Not all who wander are lost" ~ Tolkien (and many bumper stickers).

Day two of my journey involves a trip to historic Timberline Lodge.  Timberline is a mountain lodge that was constructed from 1936 to 1938 as part of the works progress administration. Skilled laborers who worked on the project earned $0.90 and hour and unskilled labor earned $0.55 an hour.  How much did supervisory stuffies earn?

Stuffies are pretty smart animals, many of the rugs, draperies, bedspreads, and other linens were actually made from old strips of Civilian Conservation Corps blankets.  If a stuffie was around during that time who knows what could have happened.

Besides recycling blankets they also re purposed cedar poles, used timber from the forest, and the foundation was but from rocks quarried off the mountain.

It was dedicated in September by President F. D. Roosevelt and he and Mrs. Roosevelt enjoyed a lunch of fresh salmon and huckleberry pie.  Those presidents really knew how to live it up.
Here I am hanging out at the same spot as FDR.  Now, he did a lot for us in Oregon and around the USA during the depression (lots of campgrounds, hiking trails, and roads to travel, yeah) but I am more of a Hoover fan.  Any president that promised a chicken in every pot gets my vote.
 Enjoying the same view that FDR had way back in the day.  My lunch DID NOT consist of salmon and huckleberry pie, instead it was a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. 
Let's go inside. 
Always a good sign when you are greeted by Smokey the Bear. 
The ironwork is pretty amazing. Makes sense that you would have a fancy fireplace in a mountain lodge. 
Nice view from the inside looking out.  Mt. Hood decided to show itself today. 
They have all of these comfy Adirondack (Muskoka in Canada as I learned from Sandy) out in the back for relaxing.  Now, how do I summon a waiter for a drink?
I need to talk to Sandy about getting a chair that is my size.  

Walking around the lodge is almost as exciting as walking in it.  The lodge is dramatic from the front.  Now, we just need to move all of these cars out of my picture. 

Back inside.  I found the pool.  I am not a historian but I guess the pool wasn't there when Roosevelt dedicated the lodge. 
I recognize some of those flags.  Let's see, Canada.  France (right Ben?).  US Forest Service.  United States of America.  Switzerland, and possibly Mexico in the background?
All of this adventuring is making me tired.  Luckily, the have some nice picnic tables outside.  The ski lift in the background ins't working since it's Summer but that mountain in the background looks like a cool place to hike.