Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Arcata to Ferndale (aka Mayberry), CA

Captions from the top: beautiful farm country around Ferndale, Barn by Ferndale, last three are pictures of downtown Ferndale.

Arcata to Ferndale, California
34 miles
Day 18

Today was full of roadblocks to us getting on our way. It was quite a saving grace to be in such a pretty place and have such nice weather. The nice weather was also bittersweet because we were somewhat regretful of the fact that we did not get very far in such great conditions. We woke up at our KOA to a completely soaked tent fly. It did not rain last night and the wetness was actually on the inside of the rain fly from the dew. Throughout the night and when we took the fly off the tent body, water dripped on our sleeping bags and pads. To make a long story short we spent a long time in the morning hanging our gear to dry. Greg worked on tuning up our bikes and putting his new rear tire on. We finally got out of the campground around noon and we hadn't gone more than a tenth of a mile when I got a flat tire on my rear wheel. A pinch flat. I guess I better be more vigilant about checking my tires in the morning. We got into Eureka and got lost. It was very stressful being in a bigger city with lots of traffic and no bike lanes and we got lost. We eventually found our way back to the route but spent a lot more time in the city than we liked, due to a second flat tire and Greg having to reseat his new tire.

The day got progressively better as we left Eureka. We started riding through some peaceful farmland full of dairy cows and got back in the groove. We came into Ferndale around 4:30 and felt like we had stepped back in time. Ferndale is a historic Victorian town. Every building in the down town looks like it might have a hundred years ago. Even the grocery store looked historic. Everyone was walking around town and talking to each other. People were so friendly and it was so perfect looking that Greg said he thought we stumbled into Mayberry. I swear we say Opie Taylor walking down the street. We had pizza for dinner....mmmmm....
We camped at the Humboldt County fairgrounds. They are HUGE! I would love to see this place during the fair. The campground at the fairgrounds was only $10 and came with hot showers. Good deal and a good night's sleep.


Ferndale is one of those towns where when you leave all you can think is, "wow I can imagine myself living in this town." Everyone in the town was amazingly nice. All of the town's people were walking down the sidewalks with children and or dogs and greeted each other from afar. The town was very clean and there were some great little cafes and a cool little grocery store. When we left the town, there was green lush farmland surrounded by distant tall timbered ridge lines as far as the eye could see. All of the farmland was consumed by dairy cattle. What a bummer. You could grow anything here. Temperatures rarely dip below freezing and precipitation is no problem. This town is a well kept secret.


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