I don't really know what day it is or when we did what any more so I will try to provide a summary!
After 4 nights in Vegas, we set off through Death Valley towards Lone Pine, CA.
Death Valley is always an interesting (&Hot) drive, big strange landscapes, long dusty roads.
Lone Pine is an old frontier mining town, one main road runs through it, and we stayed in one of the oldest hotels - Dow Villa.
"The Dow Hotel was built in the early 1920s. Even then Hollywood was looking for movie locations where there was a variety of scenery. Where better than the Owens Valley, with its snow-capped Sierra, its ancient Alabama Hills, its deserts and mountain lakes and streams. And when they came on location, they needed lodging. Mr. Walter Dow, a Lone Pine resident, could see ahead and knew what it could mean to the valley to have the big movie business, so he built the Dow Hotel.
Originally the Hotel had 55 rooms and one apartment for the manager. The front porch gave a magnificent view of the Sierra with Mt. Whitney the central attraction. The Dow Hotel hosted countless producers, directors and stars. To name a few of the stars, John Wayne, William Boyd, Roy Rogers, Gene Autry, Pat Buttrum, Stewart Granger, Errol Flynn, Robert Mitchum and Clayton Moore."
Only one night in Lone Pine before we set off again to head further into Northern California on the way to San Francisco via Yosemite National Park.
We took the scenic route through the park that goes over the mountains, Tioga Pass. I didn't take any pictures as I was too busy soaking up the scenery, and keeping my eye out for bears (apparently around 14 bears a year are hit by vehicles in the park & you know how I like bears)
Once through the park ( a 4 hour drive) we landed on the outskirts of it in a small town called Mariposa, which appears not to have evolved much past the wild west. The sheriff was on a horse outside the local bar (complete with wooden swinging door).
Stuffed armadillo in a pink bow:
The next day we headed off to San Francisco! The more we go here the more I like it.
Our first night we had a really good meal in an italian restaurant near our hotel, and being in wine country the wine was pretty good too!
We visited the USS Hornet Aircraft carrier, and I got to sit in the Captain's chair in the tower :D
We ate Tacos and drank margaritas, (Jon had a strawberry one AND a spicy pepper one).
And on the Monday I performed at Hubba Hubb Revue at the Uptown, Oakland! So much fun to be back, great show and I can't wait to see pictures! One highlight for me was the drive back over the Bayh Bridge post show - Jim (the promoter & MC) drove back complete with sailor's hat & Hawaiian shirt in situ.
Tuesday - The Madonna Inn, San Luis Obispo! I've wanted to stay at this hotel since I first read about it online about 10 years ago, it's a complete one off. Built in 1958 on a mountainside using rocks from the mountain, it can only be described as camp! Faux Swiss exterior mixed with lavish pink rose interior, stained glass, beaten copper and western murals, and that's just the common areas of the hotel. Each room is individually decorated to a theme, most of which either have a stone waterfall shower or large fireplace.
We had the "Safari Room" which had a waterfall shower!
Love this place! Want to come back and stay in every room! Jon enjoyed the large rock face fire place and stately leather chairs (with his large glass of wine). A local lady pointed out where a dinsosaur fossil was accidentally built into the walls with the rocks from the mountainside too - so cool!