There’s been just a handful of places that have taken my breath away and lifted my spirits. These are a couple of my most recent:
First Visit to Sea Ranch Steals Our Heart and Soul
But it was my first visit to Sea Ranch located at the border between Sonoma and Mendocino Counties in California, that not only stole my breath, it also captured my heart and soul.
Just three hours away from the maniacal madness that can envelop residents of the Bay Area,
The Sea Ranch awaits….
for your arrival.
Sometimes it coquettishly hides among the coastal mist teasing you with promise of the sun’s warmth.
Other times, with an excitement likened to a young lover, its coastal winds pirouette around you.
Escape from Madness to Mindfulness
To get there is no easy feat… which makes your arrival that more exhilarating.
Crawling through the snarl of traffic with its equally snarling drivers may make you think twice about your great escape.
Yet, you know by leaving The City….
You’ll soon be restored by rejuvenating vistas.
You’ll soon exchange towering concrete monoliths for equally lofty redwood trees that inscribe into its core of rings the record of mankind’s effect upon the earth.
You’ll leave behind a sprawled-out wasteland of box stores, strip malls and fast food….
for vineyards and wineries tempting you with their Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and other cool-climate-loving varietals…
… for unique locally owned boutiques such as Gualala’s Cypress Village Gallery District …
… and for restaurants like St. Orres that assures your taste buds will experience only natural, organic local bounty.
Ascending into Sea Ranch
Before taking to the curvaceous road that follows along the beautiful Sonoma coastline, you may need to channel your Bond-like driving skills. Slowly your car begins its assent above the Russian River estuary climbing into the coastal mountains.
You wonder….Is this tryst with place worth it’s winding hairpin turns, steep drop offs on one side, and grassy hills rising up on the other?
You wind past historic towns, including Fort Ross, Timber Cove and Stewarts Point.
You become enchanted by the intoxicating perfumes of sea spray, eucalyptus, and redwood mingling as one. Sunlight flickers in an out of the tree branches that soon open up to reveal its panoramic reflection upon an ocean that spreads to the ends of the earth.
And with the greeting of a simple sign you realize you have arrived to a community whose half-century commitment to living lightly on the land remains as steadfast now as when it was first conceived and hailed as heretical to modern architectural conventions.
Welcome to Sea Ranch