Friday morning Chavaunne had to pop back into the lab at UCLA to finish up some work whilst I had a lazy morning getting up slowly then taking a stroll around the university's botanical gardens & failing to get a photo of a pretty hummingbird! I also saw several butterflies, a bees nest in a tree & several ant trails. After checking out of the hotel at midday & Chavaunne picking up the last of her research we headed to pick up our hire car, we got there slightly late but no matter as the didn't have our car anyway! After an hours wait a suitable car turned up (delay was due to traffic from the airport where our car was coming from) & we headed out of LA. Slowly. Very slowly. LA traffic is a nightmare! Kudos to Chavaunne for doing all the driving today whilst I was too jetlagged to be trusted to drive!
We listened to a local country music station (the rest all seemed to be playing trash, or were talk shows) as we drove, out of the LA traffic, through the boring flat Central Valley of California and up into the Sierra Nevada. The foothills
Rustic Mountain View Cabins
Our cabin was the best placed with no one between us & the view!
of the Sierra Nevada inspired the quote "It's just like Wales... if Wales were in the Mediterranean!" due to the hills & valleys but with the drier cliimate vegeation.We saw lots of Orange trees in the valley, and sad looking cows out in the heat with no grass, up the mountains there were horses & happier cows on grass with lots of birds of prey soaring overhead (with the light behind them they were difficult to ID though). The drive through the foothills up into the mountains was lovely, beautiful views around every corner.
We arrived at Montecito Sequoia Lodge with time to check in & dump our bags before heading to the inclusive buffet supper - I had very tasty veggie chilli. The camp felt a bit like Kellerman's, especially when they announced that Bingo would be starting in the Ponderosa Room at half past! lol. Sadly there was no sign of Patrick Swayze though. Sunset over the mountains was amazing, we sat in the hot tub watching the moon & stars before sitting in front of thge main fire with hot chocolates before retiting to our own woodburner in
our cabin. Sadly the woodburner burnt out during the night so the cabin was freezing by morning!
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