birthday in pt. reyes

We started the trip on Thursday by trekking out to Tomales Bay with Doug, Buddyray, Kimi and Anthony to the Tomales Bay Oyster Farm for serious birthday grinding. Despite claims that he doesn't really like oysters (ok so he still maintains that he doesn't like raw oysters), Buddyray tucks away a small kingdom's worth of grilled bivalves. He is followed closely behind by Anthony, who has already pledged allegiance to the oyster feast.

Buddyray warming his paws by the grill, groaning with oysters and sardines wrapped in shiso. 

Anthony contemplates his victim before slurping the oyster raw (with cocktail sauce, of course).

We, the intrepid backpackers. Anthony and Kimi are suited up with the external frame packs she used to climb Mt. Whitney back in the 70s. 

The next morning, we discovered a pair of mice had sabotaged our box and shredded all napkins, cloth towels,  tea bags, and other soft fuzzy combustibles into oblivion! If you think I was mad then, this was before the rodent jerk jumped full throttle out of my foodbag, helter skelter into the bushes! Followed by his kamikaze wife! I screamed, readers. Yes indeed, I screamed. It was a good thing my snake wasn't tucked into my coiffure that day.

These two were nearly blown away at Sculptured Beach. 

There was a mighty wind that arose in the afternoon as we set up tents, and again at night. On the second night, we were surprised by numerous night visitors (human). First Angie and Luke appeared out of the shadows long after nightfall, and then some crazy German cyclist pedaled up asking if we had seen his camping party. He had biked all the way from Menlo Park and looked sorely in need of a blanket and some s'mores.

Going home meant loading up our sherpa.

Wait, we need to climb 300 odd stairs down to the edge of the earth where we can scream mundane phrases at each other in the deafening wind, and threaten to push each other off the cliff to the fate of seagulls!
Butt that's not the tail end of our story. Driving home on Lucas Valley Road, we encountered nearly a hundred cyclists along the road, on what must have been a breathtakingly beautiful race. 

"It is no longer a question of whether or not we should set aside some more of the yet remaining native California landscape as 'breathing space'....If we do not, we will leave our children a legacy of concrete treadmills leading nowhere except to other congested places like those they will be trying to get away from."

- Former Congressman Clem Miller, author of the Point Reyes National Seashore bill presented to the 87th Congress, January, 1961.