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Old 25 Feb 20, 04:35 PM  
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juliab
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The 260 Mile West Coast Wander - August 2019 - Day 11 - Goodbye Yosemite & Hello San Francisco!

INDEX

Wednesday 14th August

Slept ok with my earplugs in and I didn’t need to get up in the night either. I was awake at 7am and I went to get ready and have my wash honestly I can’t wait until we have our own bathroom again!

Did our usual morning routine of coffees, pastries and various milk’s for or breakfast then afterwards I got on with a bit of packing. Even though we had a chest of drawers we didn’t really unpack. I didn’t want things everywhere as we just didn’t have the space so we got items out of the case when we needed them. Using the packing cubes made this very easy as I could see who was whose straight away.

Poppy and I popped to the store later to have a look for a little souvenir of Yosemite. I picked up a new mug for myself and a lovely key ring which listed all the places we’d visited on out time here. Poppy chose a lovely key ring too.






Everything was then packed back into the car then it was time for us to say our goodbye’s - it was so difficult to drive out of this beautiful place knowing that we'd probably never return.



Yosemite had been everything I’d imagined and more the beauty is something to be seen to be believed - photos really don’t do this place justice. Every time you looked around there was another jaw dropping, picture postcard ready view, we loved Yosemite so much.






We drove back onto Tioga Road stopping at Crane Flat gas station to top the car up. We weren’t desperate for petrol but I felt better knowing that we were travelling on a full tank.


The road wasn’t as scenic this way but there were still quite a few twists and turns! We did pass through a few little towns though but it wasn't much of an interesting drive.



We arrived at Oakdale at midday where we stopped off for a comfort break. Found a supermarket, Raley’s, and after using their facilities we stocked up on some fresh fruit, cookies, muffin, other snacks and some beer and wine. There was a hot food counter there with a delicious variety to choose from so we ended up getting some lunch from here which was so good. Also put some more petrol in whilst we were there then we set back off our way.

The rest of the drive was fairly uneventful there wasn’t a great deal to look at but after a couple more hours we could see the skyline of San Francisco in the distance. We were so excited!






We paid the toll and then crossed over the Bay Bridge where we get to see more fabulous views of the city.




From there it wasn’t difficult for us to find our hotel the Columbus and we were soon parking up. The check in was really quick and easy they were really lovely and said our room was ready for us even though it was before 4pm. If it hadn’t been for us needing to be at Pier 33 for our Alcatraz tour we would’ve gone straight up to our room but we were cutting it very tight with the time! It was 3.20pm and we needed to be there at 3.50pm!

I asked of it was ok to leave the car where we’d parked it and he said that was fine. We dug out our vouchers for the tour and left everything else in the car then hot footed it down to Pier 33. We’d drove past it on the way up and we’d looked on Street Google and had seen it wasn’t far to walk. Pretty straight forward walk and before long we arrived, still had time to use the restrooms though before joining the queue.

We were one of the last ones to board the ferry which took us across to Alcatraz. The weather was lovely and sunny, quite warm actually but once we set off there was a bit of a breeze especially at the front of the ferry. My cap flew off my but luckily a fellow passenger managed to catch it for me!




The views were fantastic as we crossed over to Alcatraz and we had a fantastic panorama of San Francisco Bay and The Golden Gate Bridge. Before long we had arrived at Alcatraz.






As soon as we got off we all congregated on the man yard and we were given information about the tour. It was all pretty straight forward and once the talk was over with we proceeded up the small incline to get our headsets for the self guided tour.

Now I wasn’t really that bothered about visiting Alcatraz I’d have been quite happy just to see it from afar but I must confess to actually really enjoying our visit. It was quite interesting listening to what happened in the prison and of course hearing about some of the famous inmates that made this place their home!

Some of the stories were a little chilling but perfectly suitable for the likes of Poppy who found it really fascinating. Poppy particularly liked some of the prisoner’s names like Al Capone and Machine Gun Kelly!
I liked that you walked around at your own pace and was so relieved to see that we could easily walk around the places too. I thought it was going to be very busy and crowded for some reason?




The views over to San Francisco were fantastic, couldn’t imagine being here in the prison and seeing that view! It was quite thought provoking walking around Alcatraz and an experience which we all thoroughly enjoyed.



Ferry back

After we'd caught the ferry back to San Francisco we then walked back up to our hotel. We took our luggage up to our room which was really lovely it was a 1 bedroom suite which looked huge compared to our cabin in Yosemite. We were located on the top floor and the room faced the main road, we also had a cute little balcony too. The only negative was the busy road I knew I would be able to hear the noise as the windows were only single glazed. Looks like I’d need those earplugs again - still never mind at least we had our own bathroom!





Now it was time to get on with a very important job. We so desperately needed to do a wash we had 2 bags full of dusty dirty clothes that needed cleaning. I really thought that this hotel had a washing machine located there but when Scott inquired at reception he said that there wasn’t. He gave us directions to a nearby launderette though so we got our mucky clothes together and walked over to launderette called “Wash This” which was just a 5 minute walk away.

Inside it was a little busy but thankfully there were a couple of spare machines. Fairly straight forward to use they actually reminded me of the washing machines at Port Orleans Riverside.

Afterwards we went back to our hotel and unpacked a few of things and once we’d sorted ourselves out we went then back to put our clothes into a tumble dryer. Finally sorted we set off for something to eat. We just wanted something quick and easy so In Out Burger was the obvious choice.

Took us around 10 minutes to walk down to the wharf and once there like Las Vegas it was really busy. This time though we got lucky and we were able to find a table, they were super good and tasty again.


Afterwards we all walked back to the hotel, Poppy and I went up to the room whilst the boys headed back to the launderette to pick our washing back up.

Our hotel

I jumped into the shower oh my word it felt so good to be stepping into a nice clean shower! Pure bliss! Poppy got in after I’d finished then by that time Scott and the lads had returned. All the washing had dried but as I putting it away I noticed my favourite pair of shorts had shrunk! I was gutted as I’d only come away with 3 pairs of shorts! Looked at the label and of course it said do not tumble dry, we don’t have a dryer back home so I didn’t know. The same happened to a pair of Poppy’s shorts too but at least Poppy had quite a few more pairs to wear.

Everyone else showered and changed and we were in bed for 11pm, felt shattered all that washing had worn me out!
Felt great to be here and I still couldn’t believe we were visiting all these amazing places, still all feels so unreal.

Steps – 21.997

Thanks for reading

Edited at 04:39 PM.
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Old 25 Feb 20, 06:15 PM  
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Jessika
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I was so happy when I saw you had posted the next day of your report I am absolutely loving it so thank you for sharing. As always your pictures are beautiful and making me excited for my trip this summer. Do you remember what time you left Yosemite? Did Scott do the whole drive or did you share? Just trying to gage timings and the likelihood of me taking the wheel!
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Old 25 Feb 20, 07:55 PM  
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Another great day. Did you pay the toll for bay bridge as you entered or do you have to pay in advance ?
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Old 25 Feb 20, 08:26 PM  
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juliab
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Originally Posted by Jessika View Post
I was so happy when I saw you had posted the next day of your report I am absolutely loving it so thank you for sharing. As always your pictures are beautiful and making me excited for my trip this summer. Do you remember what time you left Yosemite? Did Scott do the whole drive or did you share? Just trying to gage timings and the likelihood of me taking the wheel!
Hi, so glad you're enjoying and it's helping with your planning.

Sorry I forgot to put the time on it was around 10 - 10.30 when we left. We we're crossing Bay Bridge at 3pm I've just checked the time on the photo! We stopped for about 30 minutes, maybe a little longer?

Scott did all the driving i had ever intention of doing some but Scott kept saying he was fine.
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Old 25 Feb 20, 08:30 PM  
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juliab
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Originally Posted by Stan1805 View Post
Another great day. Did you pay the toll for bay bridge as you entered or do you have to pay in advance ?
Thanks for reading along.

We paid cash as we crossed over, just got in the correct lane. We didn't even know that there was a toll!
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Old 25 Feb 20, 09:02 PM  
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mrsdjh
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Its good that you found Alcatraz interesting after all - it sounds like a great experience to visit it. Glad you got there just in time.

The burgers look delicious.

I can sense your relief at having a nice shower and getting all your clothes washed! Shame about your shorts though. Looking forward to reading all about what else you get up to in San Francisco x
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Old 27 Feb 20, 02:57 PM  
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Alcatraz looks amazing! I love history and so glad you enjoyed it. Plus those views are fabulous! X
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Old 28 Feb 20, 04:31 PM  
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juliab
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Originally Posted by mrsdjh View Post
Its good that you found Alcatraz interesting after all - it sounds like a great experience to visit it. Glad you got there just in time.

The burgers look delicious.

I can sense your relief at having a nice shower and getting all your clothes washed! Shame about your shorts though. Looking forward to reading all about what else you get up to in San Francisco x
There was a slight panic that we'd not arrive in time but thankfully we did!

It felt so good to have a shower and also to get some washing done too.

Thanks for reading
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Old 28 Feb 20, 04:33 PM  
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juliab
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Originally Posted by sheluk View Post
Alcatraz looks amazing! I love history and so glad you enjoyed it. Plus those views are fabulous! X
So glad that we all went on the tour it was very fascinating. Yes the views were something else!

Thanks for reading along
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Old 1 Mar 20, 11:06 PM  
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Julia I feel your pain leaving Yosemite... It's truly beautiful and I agree no photo does it justice. Your hotel looks nice in San Fran, we weren't too far away from you where we stayed. I loved Alcatraz, it was so creepy being on the island at night when it had gone dark. Another great day for you and your family... Glad you managed to get your washing done. We don't do any! That's why we don't travel light probably!
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