Photo of the Day… Golden Gate

san francisco golden gate bridge

A friend of mine does these jumping style photos when she travels in front of many famous places. She took an awesome one on the Great Wall of China with no one else in the shot! Rare…

Anyway, we visited the Golden Gate Bridge (we actually drove across it too – cool) whilst on our recent trip to San Francisco. We drove to the end of the Crissy Field promenade in the Presidio to a little wharf that juts out right in front of the Golden Gate Bridge. It was extremely windy and the wind was pure ice. So cold. I decided to do a jumping shot in honour of my friend. After 3 goes, nailed it!

Love the results… it’s all about the leg placement! I could get use to taking these… now to just convince The Artist to be my patient photographer each time…

Santa Cruz Boardwalk

On our epic drive down the Pacific Coast Highway from San Francisco to Los Angeles, we stopped in for a quick visit to the Santa Cruz Boardwalk. A film scene from one of my all time favourite movies ‘The Lost Boys’ I was keen to feel the seaside carnival love.

We arrived late in the afternoon and the sun was just setting off the beach, which you can access from the boardwalk. As it was New Years Eve there were quite a few riders hanging around, but it wasn’t too crowded.

I was mainly disappointed with the Boardwalk. It felt a little rundown, a little seedy and shabby. The whole area surrounding the boardwalk also seemed a bit questionable, somewhere I wouldn’t like to be at night. Most of the crowd going on the rides were teenagers, it didn’t have many families like you may find at Santa Monica Pier. Maybe earlier in the day or when it is busier (like summer) it has a nicer feel. As it was a weekday not all of the rides were open either. We only were there about 20 minutes, got some lovely late afternoon light for photographs and then moved on, continuing our drive to Monterey.

Sometimes you can have an experience somewhere that is completely different to others on a different day, or time of year. I was happy that I got my ‘Lost Boy’s’ fix in the end. Out of our drive down the Pacific Coast Highway, it wasn’t one of the highlights (though it’s hard to compete with Carmel-By-The-Sea and the coastline of the Big Sur!)

Maligne Lake, Canada

We debated over whether or not to do the $50+ cruise on Maligne Lake, which is located approximately one hour out of Jasper, Alberta. It is dubbed the number one attraction in Canada ( advertising technique? There is a lot of other spectacular things to do in Canada as well) but we had already spent a small fortune riding in gondolas and white water rafting.

The drive out to Maligne Lake from Jasper is picturesque, stopping on the way at Maligne Canyon and Medicine Lake for views and the compulsory photographs. Maligne Lake from the shore is stunning, with its far off glaciers, mountains and historical boat shed. Curiosity got the better of our money and we paid for the cruise, which motors up the long lake for 40 minutes or so to the famous ‘Spirit Island’ – which is actually an isthmus (love that word) and coined as the most photographed view in Canada.

So the verdict; it was amazing – the views from the boat and the stop off point at Spirit Island are magnificent, even on a cloudy day. The cruise is peaceful and the commentary informative and light-hearted. Still not sure if it worth the price tag, make sure you bundle your attractions to save money, with white water rafting and the Jasper tramway.

Death Valley – California

‘Let’s just keep driving till we get to our accommodation’ I said, eyeing the barren wasteland that extended all around… we sure as hell didn’t want to break down or get stranded out here!

We arrived at Stovepipe wells in Death Valley, which is a really unique place to spend the night. Thankfully they had a pool. And a store. But alas, no restaurant. TV Snacks for dinner. Though from memory we didn’t have a TV?

Still, seeing the sun set or rise over the vast lifeless valley is still pretty incredible.