Sonora Getaway Part 1. Stanislaus National Forest

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I started writing this post last weekend, with the intention of finishing it Monday morning. When I came out to the living room to get my day started, I was shocked and heartbroken to find my bunny girl Holly dead. I don't know what caused her death, but I believe it may be related to her choking incidences last month because she had mucus around her nose and mouth and she was under the hay (perhaps an underlying issue that increases chances of choking when eating). Anyway, I did not feel like finishing the post that day or any of the days following. But this morning I woke up earlier than usual and couldn't get back to sleep and felt OK to get on with it. So find Part 1 of my Sonora trip below.


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January has been busy as ever working full-time and having school start. I don't know how I would have made it if I hadn't decided to take the month of January off from my side job.

Last week I finally had two consecutive days off in a row, so my boyfriend and I decided to go to my family's cabin in Sonora (Tuolumne County AKA Gold Country). I have only been there once in the past 13 or so years, and that was in January 2017.

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Old gold country town

We left on Thursday in the late morning and got into town around 2:00pm. Since the cabin is about 20 minutes away from town in what is technically Cedar Ridge, we stopped to get some snacks and food for the evening and next morning so we would not have to drive back and forth later.

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I noticed a candy store was near the grocery we were at, so I asked for a quick stop there too.

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The drive from town to the cabin always made me nervous as a kid because of how twisty the mountain road is and how anxious I get around heights. Even 20 years later I was just as anxious, but I tried to enjoy the scenery of the Sierra Nevada.

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Another way I try to ignore my anxiety is by admiring the reddish walls of slate and clay (?) the road hugs on the opposite side of the cliff-like drops on some parts of the drive.

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When we arrived at the cabin, we brought our stuff in, and took a quick look around to see how much more of the cabin had degraded in the past three years. The cabin is in pretty bad shape, especially the first floor, but I was just happy to find that it hadn't yet collapsed onto it's own (probably soggy) foundation.

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Jordy Verrill must live on the first floor

After a look around we went back outside to go for an easy hike. Our cabin are at the very edge of Stanislaus National Forest and a trail begins right off the road.

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After walking 15 minutes or so, we were already in the forest.

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The trail was heavily flanked by manzanitas, along with oaks and a mix of conifers including redwoods and pines.

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I brought the tree identification booklet that I purchased at the Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge and had a lot of fun using the dichotomous keys to identify some of the pine trees until my boyfriend got tired of me stopping so often (understandable, as it was getting dark).

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Giant sugar pine cone!

I really enjoyed walking through the forest, although there were a lot of areas still smoldering from burns earlier in the day (I assume part of the restoration work) so there was a lot of smoke on some parts of the trail.

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We finally turned around shortly after noticing the falling ashes, which I was worried about inhaling along with the other particulates surely floating around. We took a wrong turn at one point, but still made it back to the road (just a different part).

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Walking by the other homes on the way back to the cabin we saw some redwood carvings. Some only gave crude impressions of what the final product will be and others were exquisitely detailed.

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I apologize for the blurriness of the photos, which is due to the fact that they were taken as we were walking back to beat the sunset.

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I think I will end it here. I hope to post more from the trip in the near future. Until then, thanks for reading.

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thank you! :)

You have exploring a new things for us.

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It is so much fun to explore and share :)