Flashback Friday #5

In the summer of 2000 Retta and I took a road trip to see the old growth redwoods along the northern California coastline.  In this northwestern part of the state there is an abundance of protected lands including Redwood National Park,  Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, Del Norte Coast Redwoods SP, and Jedediah Smith Redwoods SP.  These parks are all managed cooperatively by the National Park Service and the California Department of Parks and Recreation.

One treasure that lies within this region is the  under-visited Prairie Creek Redwood State Park.  Besides the majestic coastal redwoods (the tallest living organism), this park contains two gems.  The first is a place called Fern Canyon, which is a lush, green canyon filled with ferns (aren’t I perceptive?).

Enjoying Fern Canyon

Fern Canyon is a beautiful place to spend a morning or afternoon enjoying the ambiance that only a fern canyon can provide.  As an added treat, in order to get to the trail head that takes you into the canyon, you have to drive along a stretch of land called Gold Bluffs Beach, which offers absolutely spectacular vistas of the coast and ocean.  But the real draw for photographers and nature lovers are the elk which inhabit the beach area.

Elk at Prairie Creek Redwoods SP

It’s funny how you can travel to a destination in order to see the expected sights, only to find something else entirely unique and unexpected.  This is what happened to us on this particular trip.  As we were driving along the Redwood Highway, we found an unoccupied rest area along a beautiful river. Pulling into the rest area for a some R&R, Retta and I got out our folding chairs and settled in to enjoy a little snack.  Not long after, we noticed a truck parking next to ours.  At the time, our truck was a 2000 Ford, shiny and brand new, looking as if it had just come off the showroom floor (which it had).  The Ford truck which had pulled in beside ours was about a half-century older than our truck, but it looked shinier and newer than ours did!

Which is the new truck?

Before long another vehicle enter the rest area, this time a sparkling Willys.  I believe it was a 1950 Willys Jeepster Phaeton, and it was immaculate.

1950 Willys Jeepster Phaeton

Being a car-guy at heart, I had to investigate these vehicles.  As I got up from my chair to walk on over to the parking lot, I saw several more vehicles enter the lot, each one more exotic than the last.  I talked to a gentleman who had just jumped out of this set of wheels –

Old Ford roadster

He explained to me that this was a vintage and customized car club out for their monthly weekend excursion.  Part of the rules of the club are that all members (which in this case are the cars, and not the people) must be ambulatory, and that to remain in the club, each vehicle must participate in at least 6 such outings per year, or be put on probation (whatever that entailed).

Before long, the entire lot was filled with all manner of unique and interesting vehicles, most of which I cannot identify with any precision, so I will not attempt to.  But here are some more of them.

Nice ride!

Gangsta sled

Big wheeled baddie

You can’t see it in the last picture, but the entire rear of this vehicle (I think a modified business coupe) has been altered to accommodate the massive 20″ wide rear tires!  There were probably about 40 vehicles in total that day, and the best part of it all was that Retta and I were treated to a “personal” car show.  As you may well imagine, each vehicle owner was eager to talk about their buggy, and there were many interesting tales that were told.  Alas, I only wish that I had taken notes, so I could remember all of the details.

6 thoughts on “Flashback Friday #5

  1. Sam – I have always liked the Jeepster, and you don’t see too many cruising down the highways anymore.

    Also, I really enjoy reading your posts on your blog. I would comment when appropriate, but it seems one must have a blogger account to do so on your site. But I read every post anyhow. Keep up the good and interesting work.

  2. As a JEEP guy, I have to say thanks for showing me a JEEP I never had seen before.
    As a surfer guy, I must also add my thanks for getting to see a classic Woody…(Pablo, let it go)

    In our little town, the local antique car club parks at the Burger King once a month to show and tell with anyone who drops by.

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