Well, sort of Sacramento...more like trouncing around NorCal.
Josh, who was one of my first friends at UW, moved back to his hometown after graduation. That's a pretty good excuse to head down to California and pay him a visit. Hunter and I devised to make this happen. We landed, waited for Josh to pick us up, reunited, and went to his house to map out our plans for the weekend.
Saturday was solely reserved for a day trip to Lake Tahoe. The three of us jumped in the car and caught up on life while taking in the Sierra Nevadas.
Now, while we love Josh, he always manages to screw us over on hikes. The last time Hunter and I entrusted him with an adventure, we ended up going on a fourteen mile hike. Weary of the Tahoe plans, we went along with Josh's idea of hiking Horsetail Falls on the south side of of the lake.
Minutes in, we knew we had been Lowyed again. Initially the trail was intuitive, then slowly it receded into just snow, and between slipping and sliding on ice. The next thing I knew, we were on large slabs of rock, clearly not on the trail, with Josh pointing to a waterfall in the distance saying "we're heading over there".
We weaved our way through brush, rocks, boulders, and more snow before somehow navigating our way to where the waterfall emptied out into a creek and proceeded to take a quick break to soak in the scenery.
The weather was perfect - the sky was blue and sun was shining. As we relaxed and snacked, Josh spotted a boulder in the distance, and told us to meet him, in a bit because he wanted to scope out the potential bouldering spot.
Hunter and I reluctantly agreed, slowly making our way down the trail and keeping our eyes peeled for Josh who had completely disappeared from our line of vision. To pass the time, we just soaked up rays on rock slab and made the executive decision to head back to the car. We debated whether Josh was in front of us or going to catch up to us. Our answer came a few minutes later when we heard loud footsteps behind us.
Hungry from the hike, we drove into town and stumbled across a Thai restaurant on the edge of Tahoe. It seemed a little out of place, but it was probably some of the best Thai food I've ever had and kind of put some of the Seattle restaurants to shame.
Post-lunch views included a scenic drive around Emerald Bay and Bliss State Park with the occasional stop for climbing, then on to exploring the northside of Tahoe, eventually making our way to Donner Lake.
Those two idiots somehow coerced me into hiking up to what Josh refers to as Donner Summit to watch the sunset which I'm always for, except when the hill/mountain/whatever-you-want-to-call-it is covered in snow. I straggled behind, stepping my feet as best I could into the already made footprints, but here and there I dipped into thigh deep snow and soaked my shoes. It was definitely worth it and the view was breathtaking.
Back on the road, we made a quick stop in one of the mountain towns for a taco dinner and then made the long haul back to Sacramento after making our way around a good chunk of Lake Tahoe.
Sunday was spent driving west to the Bay to spend the morning in San Francisco (yes, I had been in the city two previous weekends). My only stipulation to going to SF for the day was that I had to see my mom, who we met up with for dim sum brunch at China Live.
After gorging ourselves on little buns, we wandered the Chinatown streets in the sunshine. Well, Josh was mainly on a mission to find sesame balls, which he found them and ate with satisfaction.
Since the weather was so nice, we wandered back to Mom's apartment and parted ways but not before we saw some of the greatest views of the city.
Josh, Hunter, and I made our way across the city to Lands End where we were Lowyed again. Lands End is apparently more of a walking trail - not really a hike - but I was doing this activity in a skirt and sandals, plus was a little longer than we anticipated. The reward of the walk was seeing the Pacific Ocean and Golden Gate Bridge in the distance.
Before we headed back to Sacramento, we crossed the Golden Gate Bridge towards Sausalito to check out Vista Point for probably the BEST view of the city.
On the way back, we made a detour through UC Davis so Hunter could check out the campus, and settled upon Track 7 Brewing Company for drinks and dinner before calling it a day.
Monday kicked off with brunch at The Orphan which Josh described as "right up your alley" and he was not wrong. Such a good meal. I honestly can't wait to go back there and try some other dishes. We continued into downtown to see the Capitol of California and walk the city streets.
We explored Old Sacramento and walked across Tower Bridge in all of its bright yellow glory. The trip ended with Josh showing off one of the climbing gyms he works at and we went back to the airport to catch our flight to Seattle.
Thanks for being my travel buddy Hunter! Thanks for a fun weekend Josh!